- Celts & Killie Square Off in Semi
~~~~~~~~~~ Official TC Match Preview ~~~~~~~~~~
Jota opens the scoring in the 2-0 win over Killie at Celtic Park last weekend
Hampden Park, Glasgow
Saturday, 14 January 2023
The Hoops and Killie go toe to toe once again this weekend at Hampden Park, with a spot in the League Cup Final next month up for grabs.
Any Cup tie is always a potential banana skin and it only takes one off day, but no doubt Postecoglou and his side will be wanting the opportunity to add a sixth League Cup crown in seven seasons.
Manager Ange Postecoglou's Bhoys are looking to defend the League Cup crown that they claimed last season, and as fortune would have it, are up against Kilmarnock, who they defeated 2-0 in the league at Parkhead last weekend.
In truth, it could have been even more emphatic as the Celts hit the woodwork on three additional occasions as well as having created a number of other clear opportunities, only to be denied by a combination of last ditch defending and Killie goalkeeper Sam Walker pulling off a string of impressive saves, last weekend.
Reo Hatate put in another top notch performance in midfield last weekend
Meanwhile Derek McInnes side reached this point, having progressed through the Group stage with wins over Fraserburgh, Montrose and Stenhousemuir, with a 1-1 draw being the only blemish on what was a comfortable passage through, before further knocking out both Hearts and Dundee United to set up this semi-final showdown with the Hoops.
Kilmarnock has eased the immediate concerns about their league status, although that clearly will remain their priority this season, so while having a good Cup run is an unquestioned bonus, they will be looking to make the most of this, when the two sides line up this weekend.
The Bhoys celebrate during the 2-0 win over Killie last weekend
By the Numbers
- Celtic scored four goals in each of the previous two rounds of this tournament, defeating County 4-1 in Dingwall, before turning over Motherwell 4-0 ar Fir Park.
- Celtic are undefeated against Kilmarnock since 2018, and have won the last 4 straight meetings between these sides coming into this match, by an aggregate of 13-0.
- The last time these sides met in the League Cup, Celtic won 5-0 in 2017.
- However the last time they met at Hampden Park, Killie pulled off a 1-0 victory in the 2011/12 League Cup Final.
Benjamin Siegrist has started in each of the previous rounds of the League Cup this season
The Bhoys will be without Greg Taylor (hamstring), Sead Hakšabanović (foot), Tony Ralston (back), Stephen Welsh (niggle) and James McCarthy (hamstring), who are all sidelined.
One of the questions that has seemingly gone under the radar is what is the situation with Benjamin Siegrist. The Swiss shot stopper, who has deputized for Joe Hart in each of the previous two rounds of the League Cup, has been missing from the last couple of matchday squads. Which raises the question over his availability, if he is fit, will he be given the opportunity for this League Cup Semi-Final?
As for Killie, Kyle Lafferty is once again available having completed his 10-match suspension, however Innes Cameron and Jeriel Dorsett remain sidelined.
Referee: Willie Collum
The 43yr old is one of the most experienced referees in the Scottish game, having officiated 43 League Cup games over the years, including 2 Finals. This will be the 4th time officiating Celtic this season, following the League Cup clash with Ross County and Premiership matches against Livingston and Motherwell.
Celtic's Overall Record
M: 85 W: 62 D: 12 L: 10
VAR: Greg Aitken
~~~~ Head to Head ~~~~
P: 253 W: 167 D: 56 L: 30
Last 5 Meetings
W W W W D
~~~~ 2022/23 Form ~~~~
W D W W W ~ L D W D L
W D W W W ~ L D W D L