Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Prediction: Celtic vs Rangers

Verdict: Celtic win

Best Odds: 19/20

Bookmaker: Unibet

Looking to take a giant stride towards this season’s Premiership crown, Celtic will host bitter rivals Rangers on Sunday afternoon.

Celtic

Starting with the hosts, while Celtic might have seen Rangers snatch this year’s League Cup with a last-gasp 2-1 victory earlier in the month, it appears that the Hoops are cruising their way towards another domestic crown. Last seen picking up a deserved 2-0 win away at Ross County, Ange Postecoglou’s men hold a commanding six-point buffer over their bitter rivals. Knowing that another Old Firm victory on Sunday would see them all but claim this season’s title, the one-time Melbourne Victory boss has seen his side gain a string of plaudits. Looking to lay down another marker in Glasgow this weekend, Celtic are in the midst of a stunning Premiership purple patch. Including a thumping 7-0 romp against St. Johnstone on April 9th, Postecoglou’s side are unbeaten in their last 28 straight top-flight contests, a run that stems all the way back to the middle of September. Storming their way towards a Champions League return, the Hoops should find the mood in their camp at a real high.

Team News

Aside from 26-year-old Josip Juranovic who will once again be missing this weekend, Celtic do have a clean bill of health.

After being rested against Ross County, the likes of Tomas Rogic and David Turnbull will be hoping for a recall here.

Rangers

As for the visitors, while Rangers might have put in a gritty display out in Germany a few days ago, the Blues were left heartbroken by their late 1-0 defeat against RB Leipzig. Nevertheless, storming their way to the semi-final of this season’s Europa League, new boss Giovanni van Bronckhorst does appear to be enjoying life at Ibrox. Despite chasing a six-point deficit if they’re to defend their Premiership crown, they have won their last three domestic contests on the spin. Shocking their Old Firm rivals as they claimed this year’s League Cup title back on April 17th, the one-time Arsenal defender has also seen his side continue to impress on the road. Including a 3-1 win away at Motherwell in their last appearance away from Ibrox, it should be noted that Rangers are unbeaten in their last eight domestic away fixtures, a run that stems back to February 2nd. Knowing that they are really in the last chance saloon this weekend, nothing less than three points will be enough for van Bronckhorst’s side here.

Team News

In what could be a real blow to Rangers, Sunday’s guests are sweating over the fitness of both Aaron Ramsey and Kemar Roofe.

Likewise, the defending Scottish champions will be without the likes of Alfredo Morelos, Ianis Hag and Leon Balogun.

Key Factors to Consider

    • When the two sides faced off in the League Cup final on April 17th, Rangers picked up a 2-1 victory in extra-time.
    • However, Celtic have collected back-to-back Premiership victories against their Old Firm rivals.
    • Likewise, Rangers are unbeaten in their last eight domestic contests away from Ibrox.
    • Celtic are remarkably unbeaten in each of their last 28 straight Premiership contests, a run that stems back to the middle of September.
    • Rangers have recorded just a single clean sheet from any of their last seven away fixtures across all formats.

    Conclusion

    While Rangers might have put in a rugged display out in Germany a few days ago, the Blues will know that they face another stern test on Sunday afternoon. Chasing a six-point deficit and facing what is nothing short of a must-win showdown here, Celtic will be looking to all but finish off the job on home soil. Appearing to cruise their way towards another Premiership crown this season, the Hoops are in the midst of a stunning top-flight run. Unbeaten on Premiership duties in their last 28 straight outings, they will be looking to pick up Old Firm bragging rights once again. Despite watching Rangers claim this year’s League Cup earlier in the month, it should be noted that Celtic have secured back-to-back top-flight victories against their bitter rivals.

    Verdict: Celtic win

    Best Odds: 5/6

    Bookmaker: Unibet

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Tom Dunstan


    Formerly of The Independent, Tom is a freelance football and boxing journalist from Essex, England. Currently working for three online publications, Tom is a graduate of the University of Falmouth and has spent the last two years writing across Australia, New Zealand and Asia. He can be followed at @IamTomDunstan

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