Historically, we have seen a special kind of alchemy under the bright lights of Celtic Park on a Champions League night. High odds have been rumbled more than once against the great and the good.

And as Celtic prepare to open their Group B campaign against the financial largesse of Paris-Saint Germain, a team who will have pretensions of winning the tournament this season give the vast sums they have invested in their squad this summer, Brendan Rodgers’ men will have to hope for a little bit of magic to take something, anything, from what is a lopsided affair.

On paper, it looks most unlikely.

But few football matches are immune to the vagaries of fortune and luck, of tales of the unexpected.

Read more: Derek Rae: Imperious PSG should win, but Celtic have history of upsetting the odds​

Celtic will go into the game knowing that they will see little of the ball, that they will be dominated by the French side, and what they will look to do is plan a game around that.

As they have done before.

Manchester United, Juventus, Barcelona are just three who have found Celtic tough to meet on their own patch. The Barca win ranks up there as the pinnacle of Neil Lennon’s time at the club when an improbable result was delivered with some panache on the night Celtic celebrated their 125th anniversary. Back to the alchemy, and all that.

The roof will come off when the Hoops go into their huddle in the immediate minutes before kick-off but to maintain that noise, there has to be something on the pitch to shout about.

Muting the effect of a PSG side who put five past Metz on Friday night with a free-wheeling quad forward line consisting of Edinson Cavani and Julian Draxler accompanying Neyemar and Kylian Mbappe.

Neymar apparently branded the Celtic fans ‘boring’ in the build-up to this game, ensuring that he remains in line for a particularly warm welcome when he emerges from the tunnel.

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The little playmaker has a bit of previous when it comes to noising up both the Celtic support and the Celtic players, but there will be only one way in which to have the last laugh.

It is difficult to underestimate the magnitude of the task that lies in wait this evening, but it is a mission that seems tougher still when consideration is given to the fact that Rodgers will be without his favoured defenders.

Jozo Simunovic was exposed to Hamilton’s plastic pitch on Friday night, a game he would normally have sat out, in order that the club’s only fit centre-half got some game time ahead of this one.

With Dedryck Boyaya and Eric Sviatchenko just resuming training after injuries sustained over the summer, there is a headache when it comes to providing a defence that will be capable of standing firm in the face of sustained and menacing pressure.

Read more: Olivier Ntcham hadn't heard of Celtic until 2012 Barca win....midfielder wants to do the same against PSG

Last season in the Champions League, Celtic shipped 16 goals in the group stages and did not win a game. Against formidable opposition, they gave strong accounts of themselves in both home and away ties against Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City side, but they will look to grab that third place spot this term that would take them into the Europa League beyond Christmas.

In that respect, home games will be crucial to determining that outcome.

And tonight’s game will require heroics and a touch of luck, the rub of the green, if they are to manufacture anything.

In many ways what they want to avoid is the kind of morale-sapping result they suffered in the Nou Camp last year in their first game. There is an argument to suggest that Celtic have done their job by simply qualifying for the group in that the financial reward they will reap now will be considerable, but neither Rodgers, his players nor the Hoops supporters will see it that way.

The Champions League is the stage upon which the club believe they deserve to play and in order to shine they need to be able to produce something special in the competition.

Read more: Jozo Simunovic was unnerved by Lionel Messi staring at him in Champions League clash jokes Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers

Their task has grown harder with each passing year as the discrepancy in finances between the elite level clubs has grown ever wider. The sums spent on two players by PSG this summer - £366m – put Celtic’s job in perspective this evening.

On a purely rational level, tonight is a step into the unforgiving environment of the most testing arena of all. It is fine for observers to indulge in a narrative that preaches heart and spirt and character but ultimately there is also quality, the finest quality that money can buy that Celtic are up against.

They will have easier nights at Celtic Park this season but tonight promises intrigue and excitement and an exceptional challenge in nullifying the threat of Europe’s most potent forward line.

It is as tall an order as they come.