Premiership giants Celtic haven’t been enjoying the greatest run of form of late, and their position on the league table and in Europe is a clear indication of just that. The Hoops currently find themselves in second place on the league table, with Old Rivals Rangers ahead of them by a double-figured number of points. More worryingly, despite being one of the biggest and most celebrated clubs in the entire world, their European adventure ended extremely early this season too. Not only did they fail to get out of the group, but they had to wait until the final gameweek of the group stages to pick up their first victory.
Although being in second position in the league isn’t necessarily a bad thing, the gulf in point between the two sides will surely be worrying Neil Lennon as well as his backroom team. While their record of ten wins and just one loss from 15 outings doesn’t look bad on paper, comparing it to the form Rangers have been in shows them in a bad light. However, the frustrating part for Celtic fans will be their recent record across all competitions. It must be conceded that their last two outings have ended in wins, but prior to that, the Bhoys’ record read two wins from 12 outings across the various tournaments they’re involved in.
Over the course of that period, Neil Lennon tried multiple formations, systems, general tactics, varying intensities, and of course, different personnel. Although all of these things made slight differences, none of them were able to help achieve just what this Celtic team set out for. While they looked completely toothless and lethargic in attack on some occasions, on others, it was as if they’d completely forgotten how to defend. None of the summer signings were able to help the team either, and Lennon was forced to experiment.
Here’s How Celtic Should Approach The Cup Final Against Hearts:
How Celtic Should Approach The Cup Final Against Hearts
One of the most drastic changes that Neil Lennon recently made was the introduction of David Turnbull and Ismaila Soro into the first-team setup. While the former has managed to make the number ten role his own, the latter seemed like an immediate upgrade over the ageing presence of veteran midfielder Scott Brown. Soro’s work-rate and Turnbull’s invention have both been pivotal to their performances in the last couple of wins, and Lennon should stick with those two in the core of his team. The energy and enthusiasm that these two provide in the middle of the park will be essential.
With that in place, there’s no reason why Neil Lennon’s men should approach this fixture any differently than they would a regular Premiership outing. Celtic are one of the strongest teams in the country, if not the strongest. There’s only one way that a team like Celtic should set up against Hearts, and that is to win. Expect the Parkhead club to control possession of the ball for large chunks. The one thing that they will have to remain vigilant about is that they don’t get caught out of position defensively, as going a goal down could really wind the momentum out of this Celtic team.
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