Soccer Picks: Ajax vs. Celtic Champions League Pick

Steven Suarez

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 7:43 PM GMT

The Bhoys are mighty tough to beat at home, but they have to try to get the job done in Amsterdam this week. How are the soccer odds shaping up?

Odds Overview

Back at Amsterdam Arena, Ajax is the favorite at -125 or so at the top sportsbooks. Celtic is in the +350 to +400 range in the soccer odds, while a draw is +280.

Ajax

It hasn't been the best of responses from the Dutch champions after their loss to Celtic back on October 22nd.

Ajax immediately went on to tie RKC Waalwijk 0-0 at home, a poor result considering it came against a side that's second-from-bottom in the Eredivisie.

Three days later, Ajax came through with a dominant 4-1 win over ASWH in the Dutch Cup. Viktor Fischer, Danny Hoesen, Siem De Jong and Kolbeinn Sigthorsson scored the goals in the convincing win at home.

Back in league play, Ajax lost 1-0 at home to Vitesse. While Vitesse is second in the table, it's still troubling to see this kind of result in front of the home supporters, especially right before a crucial Champions League clash. Hopefully the fans will be able to rally around their team and provide an excellent atmosphere for this showdown at Amsterdam Arena.

Sigthorsson has been the main goalscoring inspiration for Ajax throughout the early stages of 2013/14. He's scored six goals in nine Eredivisie appearances and has been a frequent contributor in Iceland's World Cup Qualifying campaign as well, having scored four goals in five matches. We'll see if the young striker can make life difficult on the Scots on Wednesday.

Celtic

The Bhoys are certainly putting up a fight in another very tough Champions League group that features Barcelona, AC Milan and Ajax.

So far Celtic has lost 2-0 away to Milan before losing 1-0 at home to the Catalans. However, the Bhoys bounced back to beat Ajax 2-1 at home in their latest European adventure, with James Forrest and Baram Kayal getting on the score-sheet.

The momentum has been there for domestic play. Celtic beat Partick Thistle 2-1 away from hone, but then were held to a 1-1 draw by Dundee United at home.

It was a forgettable day at Parkhead, that is until stoppage time. The Bhoys actually looked destined to lose for the first time all season, but a dramatic header from Charlie Mulgrew evened up the honors.

Georgios Samaras and Anthony are the ones to watch for Celtic, but there's even more attention on goalkeeper Fraser Forster right now and for good reason. His performances have been tremendous, even garnering enough attention to earn him a call-up into the national team fold.

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Champions League Pick

We don't foresee this being easy for Ajax, but we do think they'll barely get by with the full three points.

Celtic is a tough team to break down and they've done very well away from home in the Scottish Premier League. In six matches outside of Parkhead, the Bhoys have won five times and drawn once with a goal differential of plus nine.

That being said, Ajax dominated possession in the first meeting with Celtic and was able to generate some legitimate chances. They should be able to carry that over to their own turf.

Plus, the Dutch outfit has lost just one time at home in all competitions this season. We're looking for a very tight affair, but will ultimately choose the Dutch outfit to grab the three points for my soccer pick.

Soccer Pick: Ajax 2 Celtic 1