The first Old Firm derby of the season feels like the most significant in many years.
Celtic, chasing a record tenth league title in-a-row, currently sit one point behind early pace-setters Rangers having played one game fewer. They now have an excellent chance to steal a march on their fierce rivals and establish some clear daylight at the top as they attempt to make history.
Saturday October 17, 12.30pm
Sky Sports Football
Both sides have effectively matched each other stride for stride in the league this season, boasting almost identical goal differences and performances. However, Celtic have been flawless at Celtic Park in the league since December last year, when Rangers recorded their first win at their Glasgow rivals in eight years.
Rangers, on the other hand, have been less faultless away from Ibrox this season, dropping four points in their five games on their travels. They may just come up short on Saturday.
Albian Ajeti is set to return to the Celtic starting XI after injury and it couldn’t come at a better time. Talisman Odsonne Edouard, who has hardly set the world alight this season, tested positive for COVID-19 last Wednesday and will only be cleared to return to training on Friday at the very earliest.
Consequently, he is unlikely to start against Rangers on Saturday, something that is highly unfortunate for Celtic since the French striker has proved especially prolific against their biggest rivals.
New signing Ajeti will be expected to step into the void left by Edouard, something that he has already been doing this season.
The Swiss striker has five goals in six league appearance so far and is more than capable of adding to that tally this weekend.
In a statistic that will surprise absolutely nobody, Celtic and Rangers have been by far the highest scorers in the Scottish Premiership so far this season. Celtic have been slightly more clinical in front of goal, scoring 25 goals in nine games compared to Rangers’ 24 goals in ten.
Rangers, on other hand, have been more miserly at keeping goals out, conceding just three times in their ten games so far. Celtic have been slightly leakier at the back, as seen in their unconvincing 3-2 win at home to Livingston, and it just seems unlikely that they will be able to keep out a potent Gers attack that has averaged 2.5 goals a game.
Neil Lennon’s side may well have to score twice if they are to get one over their bitter rivals. That means that over 2.5 goals is also an attractive market.
Celtic v Rangers tips
- All odds are correct at the time of first publishing but are liable to change. However, all prices are bang up to date on our snazzy widgets
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