- Hoops' Cup Quest at Tannadice
~~~~~~~~~~ Official TC Match Preview ~~~~~~~~~~
Tom Rogic scored a goal of the seaosn contender on the last visit to Tannadice
Tannadice Stadium, Dundee
Monday, 14 March 2022
Celtic travel to Tayside as they face off against Dundee United in the Scottish Cup Quarter-Final on Monday evening. And with the other 3 Semi-Finalists already determined, Celtic will be looking to join them in making it an all Edinburgh and Glasgow affair.
In order to do so, Ange Postecoglou's side will need to find a way past a equally determined Tannadice outfit, who have proven increasingly difficult for teams to beat - and that includes the likes of Sevco and Hearts in recent weeks.
United, under the guidance of Tam Courts, have clearly shifted focus since the Winter Break, by placing more emphasis on getting off to a more proactive and positive start to games. This approach has not only seen the Tangerines on the scoresheet earlier more often, the results speak for themselves.
No doubt United would've liked to have won a couple more games in that time, but there can be no arguing the fact that they have undoubtedly become a much more difficult and resilient team to actually defeat.
Indeed, since the last time these sides met back in January, the Terrors have only lost once - and that was away to Livingston - a fixture which has caused trouble for a lot of teams, not least of which has been Celtic until last week when Postecoglou's men won there at Almondvale for the first time since 2007.
So for the Celts to prevail, they will have to do so against a team that the next best two teams in the Premiership have been unable to get the better of in two of their past three games, coming into this clash.
The last time the Hoops visited Tannadice it resulted in a 3-0 win back in December, inspired by a sensational Tom Rogic performance. And yet, as if to highlight how hard United have become, the last meeting between the sides at Parkhead required a dramatic 90th minute strike from Liel Abada as Celtic scraped a narrow 1-0 win, back in January.
As such Celtic may need to be at their clinical best as they look to progress to the Semi-Final draw, where nothing can be taken for granted in what could potentially prove to be a tight, tricky and tasty contest.
Liel Abada's late strike sealed the win when the sides met in January
Stats & Trivia
- Both Celtic and United have reached this stage on the back of facing lower league competition in the previous two rounds, with the Bhoys having defeated Alloa Athletic and Raith Rovers, while the home side have seen off Kilmarnock and Partick Thistle.
- Celtic come into this game on the back of a full week's preparation - in fact it will be 8 days since the last time the Hoops were in action. Aside from enforced breaks, such as the Winter Break and the International Breaks, this is the longest gap between games all season.
- United have not defeated Celtic in the Scottish Cup since the Semi-Final stage in 1981.
- Since that time the two sides have met in the Cup 7 times (actually 6, but once in a replay in 2015), and even though there have been some classic Cup ties among those, the Hoops have ended up prevailing, including winning in the Cup Finals against the Tannadice club in 1985 and 1988, the latter completing the Centenary Double.
- The last time Celtic travelled to Tannadice on Scottish Cup duty was also at the Quarter-Final stage, back in 2015. It resulted in a match that was blighted by atrocious refereeing calls that saw three players seeing red (one of which was mistaken identity), two questionable penalties awarded (one to each side) and the 1-1 draw forced a replay at Celtic Park 10 days later. These two Scottish Cup matches were part of a run of 4 consecutive games played between Celtic and Dundee United in the space of 2 weeks, along with the League Cup Final squeezed between these two games and a league meeting that followed the replay.
Roy Aitken & Anton Rogan celebrate the 1988 Cup triumph to seal the Centenary Double
With both teams coming into this clash on the back of more than a full week's rest and preparation, both squads should be in good shape for the respective managers to select from in addition to being able to implement their respective gameplans.
For Celtic, there is a slight doubt over James Forrest, who picked up a bit of a knock in the win over Livingston last time out, although it isn't regarded as anything too serious.
Meanwhile, David Turnbull is close to a return to action - although it is expected to be not quite ready for this match, while Kyogo Furuhashi is also slowly nearing a return from the hamstring trouble that has kept him sidelined since before Christmas.
For the home side, they also have just a couple of absentees, with Dylan Levitt, who has missed the past few games since being forced off injured against Aberdeen last month, and Peter Pawlett, who it was recently revealed will require surgery on an achilles problem that has ruled him out for the remainder of the season.
~~~~ Head to Head ~~~~
P: 216 W: 127 D: 53 L: 36
Last 5 Meetings
W W D D W
~~~~ 2021/22 Form ~~~~
W W D L W ~ D L D D W
CEL Away ~ DUT Home
W D L W W ~ D D W W L