Celtic manager Neil Lennon is looking forward to meeting Spartak Moscow in the Champions League, as he can show former Bhoy Aiden McGeady what he's missing at Celtic Park
Celtic have been drawn in Group G with Barcelona, Benfica, and Spartak Moscow, and will host the Russian giants in Glasgow on December 5th. The Scottish champions received €12million for McGeady from Spartak in 2010, and used the money to help bring in names such as Gary Hooper and Joe Ledley, helping the Bhoys lift the league title again in 2011-12.
Lennon is confident the Celtic fans will welcome McGeady back with open arms, telling the Evening Herald that there were no hard feelings over the winger's departure. "I think he'll get a really good welcome," Lennon said. "He served the club brilliantly. He never left under acrimonious circumstances, he left because a really good bid came in for him and because he wanted to further his career in Moscow.
"By all accounts he's done really well and he played a crucial role in the goal that got them through to the group stage. It has enhanced his international career going there, he seems to be a regular in Trapattoni's Ireland team, so his career's taken a step forward."
Lennon is also looking forward to meeting Barcelona in the group stages, and feels the Spanish runners-up are likely to win the group. "In terms of glamour, they don't come much bigger than that," Lennon said. "I played against them in 2004, a long time ago. I didn't see very much of the ball, to be fair. You very rarely do against Barcelona."
"You would imagine there will be three teams going for second place with Barcelona the outstanding team in the group and clear favourites. We'll just have to see where it takes us."
Celtic kick off their Champions League group stage campaign against Benfica on September 19th at Celtic Park, followed by a trip to Moscow on October 2nd.