Rangers v Celtic
Scottish Premier League
Sunday 28 February, 12:30 GMT
Rangers v Celtic Preview
Glasgow comes to a stand-still on Sunday afternoon when giants Rangers and Celtic lock horns in the Old Firm derby. This one is eagerly anticipated with Rangers fully aware that a win and a 10 point lead (with game in hand) will almost seal the League Championship.
As for Tony Mowbray’s Celtic, they will be probably more aware that they have to win in order to keep their Championship fight alive. The gap is currently 7 points, but a Celtic win would bring it to 4 and despite Rangers having a game in hand, the pressure would be back on Walter Smith’s Rangers.
Looking at the game as a whole, we are certainly due an absolutely cracking match because the games recently have been seperated by a single or two goals which shows there isn’t much between the sides. The famous cliche “form goes out the window” usually applies to football’s biggest game, but here are some interesting and important points that may sway who leaves Ibrox happy on Sunday afternoon.
Last Five Old Firm League Meetings:
Celtic 1-1 Rangers
Rangers 2-1 Celtic
Rangers 1-0 Celtic
Celtic 0-0 Rangers
Rangers 0-1 Celtic
Rangers’ Last Five Matches:
Rangers 1-0 St Mirren, Rangers 3-0 Hibernian, Motherwell 1-1 Rangers, St Mirren 0-0 Rangers, St Johnstone 0-2 Rangers – W3, D2, L0
Rangers Home Form (In all competitions):
This Season – W12, D3, L3
All of Rangers’ home defeats this season have come in the Champions League against Sevilla, Unirea Urziceni and Stuttgart.
The last domestic defeat at home for Rangers was against Inverness Caledonian Thistle on the 4th March 2009.
The last domestic home defeat in which Rangers lost 2 goals was against St Johnstone on the 8th November 2006.
Rangers manager Walter Smith is Rangers’ most successful manager against Celtic.
Celtic’s Last Five Matches:
Celtic 1-0 Dundee United, Aberdeen 4-4 Celtic, Celtic 2-0 Hearts, Dunfermline 2-4 Celtic, Kilmarnock 1-0 Celtic
Celtic’s Away Form (In all competitions):
This Season – W12, D4, L6
Celtic’s away defeats have came against Kilmarnock, Hearts, Dundee United, Hamburg, Rangers and Hapoel Tel-Aviv.
Tony Mowbray has not won three away matches in a row as Celtic manager.
Who Will Score The Goals on Sunday?
Over the last few years, an unlikely hero is usually the goalscorer. For Rangers, Kevin Thomson, Ugo Ehigou, Lee McCulloch and Steven Davis. For Celtic, Darren O’Dea scored in the League Cup Final.
For Rangers, Could the hero this time be Steven Whittaker? 10 goals this season from the full-back position.
Could it be 39-year old David Weir? Or even left-back Sasa Papac?
Or even a marauding run forward from Madjid Bougherra?
Or Could it be the much-criticised Kyle Lafferty, to finally put the doubters to bed?
If you don’t want to take a punt on an “outsider”, how about Kenny Miller to add to his 2 Old Firm goals this season? or Nacho Novo, who regularly pops up with an important goal against Celtic. If you’re in the middle, how about SPL top scorer Kris Boyd, who has scored 1 goal for Rangers against Celtic. His time his certainly due.
For Celtic, Could the hero be new signing Robbie Keane? Keane scored on Saturday v Dundee United.
For an outsider, how about Aiden McGeady? or Ki-Sung Yong to bag his first Celtic goal?
To be honest, I have a feeling the time is right for either Kris Boyd or Kyle Lafferty – so if you want my opinion, I’d have a cheeky punt on either one of them. Although, you simply can’t right off the goalscoring powers of Robbie Keane and Kenny Miller.
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