THE tactics and the selection of the team will have to be spot on for this crucial game for Celtic, but nerves will play every bit as big a part on the night.
So, to avoid any undue anxiety, Neil Lennon should try to pick a team and a system capable of taking the initiative and, hopefully, the lead as early as possible.
The defence takes care of itself, with Lustig on one side, Mulgrew on the other and Wilson and Ambrose in the centre of the back line.
A midfield four of Commons, Brown, Kayal, and Ledley would offer security and an attacking threat, with Commons one of the best players on the park in the Hoops victory at Tynecastle last week.
Up front, Samaras and Hooper should be given the task of keeping the shaky Spartak defence on edge, and with the likes of Watt and Lassad on the bench there will be no lack of options if the need for more firepower should arise.
BRING BACK IZZY says MATTHEW LINDSAY
THE Celtic team that Neil Lennon sends out to play Spartak Moscow will depend greatly on who is fit.
But if Scott Brown is indeed available and Emilio Izaguirre shows no adverse reaction to his comeback, both men should start in the crucial tie.
Izaguirre would be best in a defence that features Ambrose, Lustig and Wilson. With Victor Wanyama suspended for the visit of the Russians though, who should play in midfield is not so clear cut. But going with Mulgrew, Ledley, Brown and Commons would give the Scottish champions a nice combination of creativity and physicality.
Up front, Georgios Samaras has been invaluable for the Parkhead club in Europe and Gary Hooper always poses a goal threat. If Lennon is in a cautious mood though, he may bring Beram Kayal in from the cold and sacrifice Hooper. The Israeli has looked sharp during his first team appearances.