All eyes will be on Hampden Park this Sunday when the two most successful clubs in Scottish football, Celtic and Rangers, will collide each other in the semi-finals of the Scottish League Cup. Whenever the two giants of Scotland take on each other, it is a huge occasion and this Glasgow Derby, being contested in a Cup semi-final, makes it even more exciting. ‘The Old-Firm Derby’, the biggest footballing occasion in Scotland, is one of the fiercest rivalries in world football. The two clubs are married in a century-old hatred for each other and all the players will give their 100% in this game.
Celtic will be favourites for the game given their form this season. The two already met each other once in Premiership this campaign and it was a rout for the Hoops. Brendan Rodgers’ boys won 5-1 as Rangers left the Stadium with blushes. Will we get to see a sweet revenge from the Gers or the same fortunes will be awaiting them? Only time will tell.
Rangers suffered a major blow with midfielder Niko Kranjcar suffering a nasty knee injury on the training ground. The Croat could be a long-term miss for the Gers. Joey Barton is unavailable due to the suspension imposed on him by Rangers. Jordan Rossiter makes his way back to the squad following a calf injury but Danny Wilson remains doubtful with a thigh injury.
Rodgers has the luxury of having a fully fit squad at his disposal.
Rangers (4-3-3): Foderingham; Tavernier, Hill, Kiernan, Wallace; Halliday, Holt, Windass; Waghorn, Miller, McKay
Celtic (4-2-3-1): Gordon; Lustig, Sviatchenko, Simunovic, Tierney; Brown, Bitton; Forrest, Rogic, Sinclair; Dembele
Rangers- Andy Halliday
Joey Barton’s suspension created a big void at the base of Rangers midfield and young Andy Halliday has done an excellent job in recent weeks to fill in the big Barton-shaped void. The 25-year-old is not as good a passer as Barton is but he is more energetic and tenacious. Halliday’s chemistry with Holt is brilliant and Rangers can nullify Celtic in midfield having the age advantage on their side. Windass is likely to complete the midfield trio against Celtic and that adds more legs to Warburton’s side.
Celtic- Scott Sinclair
Sinclair has managed to revive his career in some style right after his move to Celtic this summer. The 27-year-old provides a lot of creativity and directness from the left flank and is a goal threat too. He also possesses valuable experience needed in this sort of games.
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