Football Previews

Celtic vs Aberdeen preview, predictions & possible XIs

By Harry Edwards

Published: 17:31, 20 December 2019

Celtic will be looking to keep their five-point lead at the top of the Scottish Premiership table when they face Aberdeen this weekend.

The Bhoys currently sit five points clear of rivals Rangers having played a game more, but that gap could be shortened to two with Steven Gerrard’s men playing on Friday night.

Their opponents Aberdeen sit in third but are already nine points behind the top two and have experienced indifferent form of late.

Celtic will want to assert their authority going into Christmas as they look to secure a ninth consecutive league title later in the season.

Read on for our Celtic vs Aberdeen preview, team news, TV coverage information and more.

When is Celtic vs Aberdeen and where can I watch live?

Competition: Scottish Premiership

Venue: Celtic Park

Date: Saturday, 21 December 2019

Kick-off: 3:00 PM (UK time)

TV coverage (UK): N/A

Last five meetings: Celtic vs Aberdeen

27 October 2019: Aberdeen 0-4 Celtic (Scottish Premiership)

04 May 2019: Aberdeen 0-3 Celtic (Scottish Premiership)

14 April 2019: Aberdeen 0-3 Celtic (Scottish FA Cup)

09 March 2019: Celtic 0-0 Aberdeen (Scottish Premiership)

26 December 2018: Aberdeen 3-4 Celtic (Scottish Premiership)

Aggregate Score: Celtic (WWWDW) 14-3 Aberdeen (LLLDL)

Ones to watch

Celtic: Ryan Christie

Celtic have not been shy of goals this season, scoring 50 in 17 Premiership games so far. Although Odsonne Edouard leads the way with 11 of those, he is closely followed by Ryan Christie.

Christie is the only other Celtic player to have reached double figures in Premiership goals, reaching 10 by opening the scoring in a 2-0 win over Hearts on Wednesday.

The 24-year-old has been a key player for Celtic this season, continuing his form from 2018/19 with Neil Lennon at the helm, and will look to provide the difference against Aberdeen — with whom he spent 18 months on loan.

Key stat: No player has been directly involved in more Scottish Premiership goals than Ryan Christie this season (10 goals, six assists).

Aberdeen: Sam Cosgrove

En route to third in the Premiership so far this season, Aberdeen have been heavily reliant on one man: Sam Cosgrove.

Only Edouard and Alfredo Morelos have scored more goals in the Premiership this season than Cosgrove’s 10, 38.46% of Aberdeen’s total strikes.

If Aberdeen are to have any chance of causing an upset against Celtic, Cosgrove needs to be at his best.

Key stat: Sam Cosgrove (10) is Aberdeen’s top scorer in the Scottish Premiership, scoring six more than any other player.

Team news


Celtic remain without Boli Bolingoli, Hatem Abd Elhamed and Mohamed Elyounoussi for Saturday’s game. However, they should have Jonny Hayes to call upon once more after he returned against Hearts in midweek.

Jeremie Frimpong could get the nod at left-back, joined by Hayes on the opposite side of the defence.

Predicted XI: Forster; Frimpong, Jullien, Ajer, Hayes; Brown, Ntcham; Christie, McGregor, Forrest; Edouard.

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Derek McInnes will be hoping he can call upon Greg Leigh after the full-back came off injured last weekend, and his fitness could dictate the way Aberdeen set up.

Twice recently they have used three central defenders, with Leigh as one of the wing-backs, and it’s a system that could return to try and frustrate Celtic as it did Rangers at the start of the month.

Predicted XI: Lewis; Taylor, Considine, McKenna; Logan, Ferguson, Ojo, Gallagher, Leigh; Cosgrove, Wilson.

Squawka prediction

Aberdeen will feel fresher going into the game after Celtic were in action in midweek but the Bhoys are still some way above their opponents.

The previous meeting this season ended in a 4-0 win to Celtic, and they have scored 14 goals in the past five games. Although only one of those matches came at Celtic Park and it was a goalless draw, Lennon’s side should have too much for their visitors.

Scoreline prediction: Celtic 3-0 Aberdeen