Celtic v Rangers Betting Tips & Predictions

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Having spent seven years at Celtic as a player and four as a manager, caretaker boss Neil Lennon is absolutely no stranger to the Old Firm derby. Many view the Glasgow based affair to be one of the most intense derbies of world football with tensions running sky high between both sets of fans.

Rangers came out on top during the 415th Old Firm clash in December and they will need another victory to keep their wafer thin title hopes alive. The Gers come into the match trailing their bitter rivals by 10 points with eight matches left to play. Even cutting the deficit to seven points is unlikely to be enough for Steven Gerrard’s men but it will hand them a feint chance of ending an eight-year Premiership drought.

Celtic News: Lennon envious of Jones deal

Celtic Park Football Stadium
rbrough, flickr

Kilmarnock’s Jordan Jones is a player Neil Lennon rates very highly, and for this reason the Celtic manager said he’s not pleased the midfielder has signed a deal with Rangers. The Northern Irish international penned a pre-contract deal with the Gers that will see him move to Ibrox in the summer when his current agreement with Kilmarnock expires. Lennon has been impressed by the quality he has shown over the last two season and believes his future employers have done exceptionally well to secure his services.

Moyes declares interest in vacancy

As things stand, Neil Lennon is only a placeholder manager, put in charge of Celtic until the end of the season. A permanent contract is far from out of the question but the Bhoys board may choose to look elsewhere should the right candidate emerge. Perhaps one option they will consider is David Moyes who threw his name into the mix earlier this week. The former West Ham manager said that he “would always be interested in the Celtic job” but also added that he believes bookies favourite Lennon is doing a fantastic job.

Rangers News: Barisic injury blow

Ibrox Football Stadium
Tom Brogan, flickr

How often have we seen this? An important player sent off for international duty only to come home early due to injury. This is exactly what happened to Borna Barisic as the Croat hobbled off during his country’s surprising loss to Hungary. After assessing his injury problem, the defender regretfully announced he would miss this upcoming Old Firm clash. It is the same issue he sustained on his leg earlier in the season and once again it is one that prevents the left back from taking on Celtic for the first time.

Gers priced out of Kent move

Ryan Kent has done plenty to impress manager Steven Gerrard during his 37 appearances for Rangers this season. In the Scottish top flight, the 22-year-old has registered five goals and four assists, respectable enough figures for a player of his age. His time at Ibrox looks set to end soon however with parent club Liverpool preferring to sell the winger rather than loaning him out again. The Merseyside outfit are seeking a fee of at least £10m for his services, a figure too steep for Rangers’ budget.

Analysis: Rangers in sticky patch

Steven Gerrard’s first season as a manager has been a successful one but the Liverpool legend could be in for a sour end to the campaign if things don’t improve. His men are four games without a win, their longest run without a taste of victory since Gerrard took over. They have faced a reasonably tough run of fixtures lately but nevertheless, it’s still enough to shake their confidence ahead of such an important clash.

Celtic Park an intimidating place

Celtic’s 100% domestic record at home finally ended earlier in the month as they were forced to settle for a goalless draw with Aberdeen. The Bhoys edged the contest but a point apiece was far from an unfair result against a Dons side enjoying an incredible patch of away form. This one stalemate hardly makes Celtic Park any less intimating however. The strong title favourites have claimed 17 victories against Scottish opposition at home this season and are trading at a tempting 3/4 to claim another. Initially there were fears that the untimely departure of Brendan Rodgers might derail their season but it is hard to spot a decline since Lennon’s appointment.

Bhoys defence looking strong

In the four matches Celtic have played since Lennon replaced Rodgers, the Scottish Premiership leaders have conceded just one goal and non-from open play. Even by their own high standard, this is an impressive record to have and they could well be set for another shut out this weekend. Rangers kept Craig Gordon busy during the last Old Firm clash but he has often been a spectator when the derby has been at Celtic Park. The Gers haven’t scored during their last four trips to Celtic Park, making a home win to nil a tempting bet at 2/1.

Recent Matches

Rangers secured their first win in 13 Old Firm matches in December with a richly deserved win at Ibrox. Their next task is to win the Glasgow derby at their rivals home, something they last did in October 2010 thanks to a Kenny Miller brace.

29th December 2018: Rangers 1 – 0 Celtic

Andy Halliday’s early challenge set the tone for this match with the left back celebrating his tackle of Olivier Ntcham as though he scored. Clearly the more fired up team, Rangers took not time in laying siege on the Celtic goal. Craig Gordon pulled off two smart saves early on before the Gers hit the post from a corner. The hosts continued to dominate and got their reward when Ryan Jack’s effort rolled in following a kind deflection. Celtic thought they equalised in the second half through Callum McGregor but the linesman’s flag came to Rangers’ rescue.

2nd September 2018: Celtic 1 – 0 Rangers

The first Old Firm Derby of the 2018/19 season went the way of the home side with Brendan Rogers getting the better of his old colleague Steven Gerrard. The former Liverpool player had Gers goalkeeper Allan McGregor and the woodwork to thank for keeping the scores respectable producing a string of saves to keep Celtic at bay. The winner came from a blistering counter by Tom Rogic with Olivier Ntcham producing the finish.

29th April 2018: Celtic 5 – 0 Rangers

Celtic produced an emphatic display to secure their 49th league title, their seventh in a row. Odsonne Edouard netted a first half brace and goals either side of half-time from James Forrest and Tom Rogic ended the game as a contest. The rout was completed on a miserable afternoon for the blue half of Glasgow when Calum McGregor slotted home past a hapless Jak Alnwick.

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