By News Team
29th December 2020
Rangers host Celtic at Ibrox in the second Glasgow derby of the campaign, where a win could put them out of sight of the champions at the top of the table. Steven Gerrard’s side are unbeaten in the Scottish Premiership this season and a win here would mean Celtic would require a small miracle to retain the title.
We take a look ahead at the match and assess the latest odds for the Glasgow clash.
Dominant Gers out to increase lead
Rangers have been criticised in recent years for stumbling around this time of year to gift Celtic points when it matters, but the Ibrox side have shown little sign of letting up with crucial wins against Hibs, St Johnstone and Motherwell recently.
The Gers have scored goals from all over the park this season and have conceded the least amount of any side in the Scottish top flight, so this will be a tough test for Celtic.
They have also won the last two New Year derbies against their city rivals and are out to make it three wins on the bounce against Neil Lennon’s team. The first derby of the season saw them run out comfortable 2-0 winners back in September.
But it will be in the back of their minds that Celtic – despite being very fragile this season – have started to pick up form recently. The Gers will be unlikely to rest on their laurels and know that a win here would be a huge boost in the context of the title race.
The Light Blues find themselves favourites for this one, and can be backed at 19/20 to claim the bragging rights once more against the Hoops. Their success has been built upon a rock-solid defence this year and they are 8/5 to secure a clean sheet in this fixture.
Last chance saloon for Celts?
Celtic know that a win here could start to plant seeds of doubt in the Rangers camp, but they will have their work cut out to secure three points at Ibrox where the table toppers have won every domestic game this season.
The last time the Celts won here was back in September last year after goals from Odsonne Edouard and Johnny Hayes secured a 2-0 triumph. A similar result would give Neil Lennon’s side a much-needed boost after a tough campaign, but a loss would see them concede further ground which they can’t afford, despite having three games in hand over Rangers.
The Celts have started to turn a corner after their Scottish Cup win, beating Hearts on penalties, which was followed up with a comfortable 3-0 victory away to Hamilton. Strikers Leigh Griffiths and Odsonne Edouard are back amongst the goals and the fans will wonder if Lennon will go with two up top in such an important game.
Their issue has still been conceding goals, and Rangers haven’t struggled to score them, which is ominous for the champions. The Hoops haven’t been used to coming into these derby matches as underdogs in recent years, but they find themselves in that position again at odds of 27/10, while the draw is 13/5.
It’s very difficult to rule Celtic out of title races this early in the season, but a Rangers win here would be another statement of intent from the blue half of the city and all but secure a trophy for Gerrard’s men.