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Dundee vs. Celtic

Tuesday 26th December

Dens Park

Kick Off: 12:30

BT Sport 1

Following on from their comprehensive victory against Aberdeen on Saturday, Celtic now turn their attention towards their next opponents, Dundee. When the sides last met back in October it was a relatively close affair, although Celtic ultimately won the game, courtesy of a 61st minute goal by Olivier Ntcham.

The biggest challenge facing both sides heading in to this game is the onset of fatigue after a hectic month of games, something both mangers will surely take in to consideration when selecting their team for Tuesday.

Celtic

Looking at the players who featured against Aberdeen perhaps gives us a hint as to what sort of team we can expect to line-up come Boxing Day.

Jozo Simunovic and Nir Bitton were both named as substitutes for Saturday’s game, yet neither managed to get any minutes during that match. That could perhaps suggest that the manager chose to rest them with the intention of having them start on Tuesday. However, some would argue that Kristoffer Ajer has made a very strong claim for a place in our starting elven over the last couple of games. The young Norwegian played the full 90 against both Thistle and Aberdeen, helping the side keep a clean sheet in both games. Whilst resting him for one match probably won’t do him too much harm in the long run, given his fairly impressive performances, Brendan Rodgers may prefer to keep his momentum going and start him on Tuesday.

In regards to other changes in our defence, Cristian Gamboa is another potential candidate for a place against Dundee. Whilst the Costa Rican international has struggled for game time, given our hectic December schedule, the manger may be tempted to give Mikael Lustig a rest. The fact that Lustig has played...
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Celtic 3 - 0 Aberdeen
(Lustig, Hayes, Ntcham)


Scottish Premiership
Round 20
23rd December 2017

Two months on from a dominant Celtic victory at Pittodrie, in what was arguably Celtic’s best performance of the season on the domestic front, and both teams were coming into this one off the back of wins. However, that does not tell the full story. The Bhoys only a week before had seen their incredible 69 game unbeaten run come to an end at Tynecastle, before getting things back on track with a routine 2-0 victory against Partick Thistle midweek. Whereas Aberdeen were looking for their 4th win in a row, having hammered Hibs 4-1 in their last fixture.

The Celtic line-up saw 3 changes from the game against Thistle, with ex-Aberdeen star Jonny Hayes the surprise inclusion, starting in place of Forrest. The remaining changes saw Moussa Dembele replacing Odsonne Edouard and the ever-improving Olivier Ntcham coming in for Callum McGregor.

Aberdeen, meanwhile, looked to be content with making life difficult for Celtic as their line-up included 4 central defenders, with Dominic Ball having to fill in at right back in the absence of Shay Logan. Starting out wide was former Celt Gary Mackay-Steven, fresh off the back of a hat-trick last weekend.

The opening stages of the match were littered with Aberdeen fouls. It was clear that the game plan was to aggressively press the Celtic players, albeit giving away cheap free kicks in dangerous positions was perhaps not exactly what Derek McInnes was wanting. Celtic began to assert their authority on proceedings, without creating too many clear-cut chances. Joe Lewis was in fact only called into action on one occasion in the first quarter of the game. A...​
MATCH PREVIEW
CELTIC VS HAMILTON ACCIES
13/12/2017 19.45 KO
CELTIC PARK
SPFL

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Neil Lennon’s Hibs were within a Mikael Lustig clearance off the line from ending Celtic’s unbeaten run, a run that now includes sixty eight matches and stretches back to May 2016. In what was an enthralling contest and a magnificent advert for the Scottish game, both sides created numerous chances and there were goals aplenty.

One would have been forgiven for believing it would be plain sailing for the men in pink on the day, as two second half Scott Sinclair goals gave the Hoops a healthy cushion. However, characteristically of a Lennon team, Hibs fought their way back into the game and seemed to inflict some nervy moments upon the heart of the Celtic back four.

It was former Celt Efe Ambrose who got one back for the Edinburgh side when a well worked corner eventually found the central defender in the penalty area, and his effort was deflected into the back of the net. The most worrying thing about the game on Sunday was the manner in which the Hoops responded to Ambrose’s apparent consolation. Within only a few minutes the deficit had been nullified and the two teams were square once more.

While Rodgers’ side has been associated with the utmost professionalism and composure in maintaining such an emphatic unbeaten run – it appeared that these traits had vanished in allowing Hibs to rescue a point from the game. With what was almost the final kick of the game, Oli Shaw had his effort cleared off the line from a back tracking Mikael Lustig – after Craig Gordon had laid the ball on a plate for the Hibs attacker when he misjudged the flight of the ball. It was the type of indecision that had been so rare in an unbeaten run that had broken all sorts of records, however it was a stark reminder that such a run can be eradicated so suddenly....
Celtic v Anderlecht
UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE
5/12/17, 19:45, Celtic Park

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Celtic's Champions League campaign comes to a conclusion tonight, that much is guaranteed. However, the hoops have the opportunity to extend their European journey into 2018 as they come up against Belgian champions Anderlecht at Parkhead in matchday 6.

The Hoops grabbed their only 3 points of the group so far away to side from Brussels with a convincing 0-3 win, and hope to replicate that kind of performance to secure a win and qualification into the UEFA Europa League round of 32.

Brendan Rodgers' side will be at full strength, as Moussa Dembele returns from a knock picked up in the Scottish League Cup final, although a long term hamstring injury to Patrick Roberts means the in-form James Forrest will be certain to start the match.

"We played very well in the first game over there and now we look to finish it off at home," said Rodgers.

"They will come to attack and look for a victory but that's also what we want. We want to give the supporters a Champions League win at home.

"That would take us to six points, which would show a great level of progress for us at this level."

Scott Brown will set a new Scottish record of 69 appearances in Europe's premier competition, passing Kenny Dalglish's combined total with Celtic and Liverpool.

On the subject of Brown's record, Rodgers added, "He's in great company with Kenny, who is obviously a real legend here and at Liverpool,"

"It's a mark of his consistency, to have played that number of games under various managers. It's a great accolade and hopefully he's got many more ahead of him."

Brown has been one of many consistent performers in a rapidly developing Celtic...
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Edouard (16', 33', 85'), Forrest (76', 88')/Frear (65')

Celtic Park
Saturday 2nd December, 2017
Ladbrokes Premiership
Round 15
67. A number which holds such a special place in the Hearts of every Celtic fan worldwide. Today however, it took on a new meaning, at least until the next domestic outing for the Hoops. Thanks to a fantastic hat-trick from Odsonne Edouard and a double from substitute James Forrest, Rodgers' men swept aside Motherwell inside Celtic Park to make it an incredible 67 games unbeaten in Scottish competition.

Not only was the scoreline emphatic in the end, but the overall performance from a Celtic side missing several key faces - either through injury or simply being rested - was commanding. From the kick off, it seemed as though they were keen to inflict a heavy 'doing' upon Stephen Robinson's outfit, with both sides facing off against one another for the 3rd time this week, incredibly, with no shortage of controversy throughout.

The surprise inclusion in the starting XI would end up being the shining light for the Hoops, with young striker Edouard taking his chance impeccably, hitting his first ever professional hat-trick in front of a healthy Paradise crowd. The Frenchman has had to be patient for his opportunity to impress, and little wonder with both Moussa Dembele and Leigh Griffiths ahead of him in the pecking order for much of this season. Having scored on his debut against Hamilton at the beginning of the season, he has found game time very hard to come by since, but was thrown in today with Moussa injured, and Griffiths seemingly being rested ahead of...