It was a lucky escape for Celtic on Thursday night when they secured an edgy 1-0 win against Hearts to keep pace with Rangers at the top of the Premiership standings. The goal from Kyogo Furuhashi looked offside from replays and the Jambos chief Robbie Neilson blasted the referee in his post-match interview. The Hoops might not be fortunate enough next time around, and therefore, must uplift their game on Sunday lunchtime against Dundee United at Tannadice.
The Parkhead tie between these two sides ended all square back in September and the Celts might suffer yet another setback due to an array of injury concerns. The Tangerines, fourth in the league tally, are enjoying a scintillating run and the Bhoys boss Ange Postecoglou needs to resolve a few shortcomings despite little time to recover from midweek’s gruelling encounter.
Predicted 4-3-3 Celtic Lineup To Face Dundee United
Joe Hart has restored stability between the sticks following his summer switch from Tottenham Hotspur. The veteran Englishman has regained his confidence after a few difficult years back in the homeland and would continue as the Hoops ‘number 1’ ahead of Scott Bain and Vasilis Barkas.
Celtic, meanwhile, endured a doubled defensive blow when both Anthony Ralston and Stephen Welsh were forced to leave the pitch against Hearts. Cameron Carter-Vickers was a surprise omission (later revealed as a personal issue), however, the fans would hope to have him back in the heart of the backline to partner with Carl Starfelt on Sunday afternoon. Josip Juranovic should operate from his preferred right-back role in the absence of Ralston and the gaffer might opt for teenage prodigy Adam Montgomery on the left who was introduced in place of the fellow Scotsman as a first-half substitute.
Both Tom Rogic and Nir Bitton are back in action and their return from injury offers depth as well as quality in the middle of the park. Postecoglou must not alter his stable midfield set-up with skipper Callum McGregor now featuring from the base allowing Tom Rogic to occupy the advanced role. The Aussie playmaker, along with David Turnbull, must orchestrate the show from the centre of the pitch with their ball-carrying and dribbling attributes, vision and creative spark.
In-form Filipe Jota might miss the trip which is arguably the biggest setback given his impact high up the pitch. Mikey Johnston should get the nod down the left-hand flank if the young Portuguese attacker fails to prove his fitness. Kyogo Furuhashi would look to add more to his tally of 8 goals in 12 league games, but the experience of fit-again James Forrest would be crucial who must retain his place on the right ahead of Liel Abada.