Celtic have little to play for in the league having lost the title battle to bitter rivals Rangers. However, the show must go on and the Hoops must secure a strong finish under John Kennedy to galvanize themselves for the forthcoming campaign. They are yet to be beaten since Neil Lennon’s exit but would undergo a tricky test this weekend while locking horns with Livingston at Celtic Park.
Livi missed out on the League Cup glory when they lost to St. Johnstone back in February. But they have an outside chance to make it to Europe and gaffer David Martindale, therefore, must motivate his men to cause an upset on Saturday afternoon.
Predicted 4-2-3-1 Celtic Lineup To Face Livingston
Big summer signing Vasilis Barkas is having a nightmare in Glasgow as he failed to grab a start against minnows Falkirk in the Scottish Cup tie. The Greek international might part ways soon with Scott Bain cementing the ‘number 1’ status between the sticks in recent weeks.
Celtic do not have ample defensive options and Kennedy, too, has not experimented much with his backline since succeeding Lennon. Jonjoe Kenny has done well to replace Jeremie Frimpong on the right, whereas the emergence of young Stephen Welsh has brought back the stability in the heart of the backline. Impressive Kristoffer Ajer is maintaining his calmness and composure as a centre-half, also on loan Diego (from AC Milan) Laxalt seems to have settled in after a difficult start to life in the Scottish environment. Greg Taylor, currently the understudy to the Uruguayan, must keep patience and wait for his chances down the left-hand side of the Bhoys’ defence.
Skipper Scott Brown is set to join Aberdeen in a player-coach role once the season is over. He enjoyed a majestic career at Parkhead and should look to end on a high note exhibiting his sheer dominance deep down the midfield. Callum McGregor was handed a much-deserved rest against Falkirk following his international duty with Scotland. But the versatile Scotsman is expected to return to action versus Livi to operate alongside the iconic veteran.
The goal last weekend must have uplifted James Forrest’s spirit after missing out the majority of the campaign with a serious ankle injury. It’s time to hand him a league start once again from his preferred right midfield role. David Turnbull must keep his place as a ‘number 10’ and offer his creativity from behind Edouard. Mohamed Elyounoussi is in fine scoring form and might eventually shift as a second striker from his usual left midfield slot.
Celtic had an underwhelming season, but the brilliance of Odsonne Edouard helped them avoid humiliation on many occasions. ‘French Eddie’ did not feature against Falkirk but should return to the starting XI to spearhead the Hoops attack. The likes of Leigh Griffiths, Albian Ajeti and Patryk Klimala have been below par all throughout the current term.