Football Previews

Celtic vs Rangers preview, predictions and team news

By Ollie Thomas

Published: 22:16, 28 December 2019

Celtic play host to their Old Firm rivals exactly three weeks after their dramatic League Cup final clash at Hampden Park.

Neil Lennon’s side clung on to win with 10 men, with Fraser Forster topping off a man of the match display with a fine penalty save from Alfredo Morelos to secure Celtic’s 10th consecutive domestic trophy.

Rangers were desperately unlucky that evening, as Celtic scored with their only shot on target. They’ll know, however, that victory on Sunday would give them the chance to leapfrog the league leaders and leave the fate of the league in their own hands.

Celtic have won 11 in a row in the league, while Rangers have come out on top in eight of their last nine outings. Something has to give.

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

Competition: Ladbrokes Premiership

Venue: Celtic Park

Date: Sunday, 29 December 2019

Kick-off: 12:30 PM (UK time)

TV coverage (UK): Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Football

Last five meetings: Celtic vs Rangers

8 December 2019: Rangers 0-1 Celtic (Scottish League Cup)

1 September 2019: Rangers 0-2 Celtic (Ladbrokes Premiership)

12 May 2019: Rangers 2-0 Celtic (Ladbrokes Premiership)

31 March 2019: Celtic 2-1 Rangers (Ladbrokes Premiership)

29 December 2018: Rangers 1-0 Celtic (Ladbrokes Premiership)

Aggregate Score: Celtic (WWLWL) 5-4 Rangers (LLWLW)

Ones to watch

Celtic: Ryan Christie

Ryan Christie celebrates scoring in a Europa League group game.

The man who set up Jullien’s winner in the League Cup final has been in scintillating form this campaign. Christie has scored 17 goals in all competitions already this season and, at just 24 years of age, is well on his way to writing his name into Celtic Park folklore.

Key stat: Christie has already been directly involved in more league goals this season (18) than the whole of last season (15).

Rangers: Alfredo Morelos

Who else? Morelos seems to hit the headlines every week for one reason or another. His insatiable appetite for goals seems only to be matched by his insatiable appetite for drama — given that he missed a penalty in the League Cup final, you can be assured that he’ll be hungrier than ever to set things right.

Key stat: No player has scored more goals in the Scottish Premiership than Morelos (12) this season.

Team news


Jonny Hayes is available for selection once again following a shoulder injury, but Mohamed Elyounoussi, Hatem Abd Elhamed, Jozo Simunovic and Daniel Arzani are all still out.

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

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The return to fitness of Steven Davis and Jordan Jones is timely for Steven Gerrard, who only has Filip Helander unavailable for this mammoth clash.

Predicted XI: McGregor; Tavernier, Goldson, Katic, Flanagan; Jack, Davis, Kamara; Aribo, Morelos, Kent.

Squawka prediction

Both sides have been more or less untouchable in the league this season, making this hard to predict on paper. Realistically, other factors will decide it: Rangers will be desperate to set the record straight after their League Cup final defeat, whereas the atmosphere at Celtic Park will be irresistible. Expect a cracker.

Scoreline prediction: Celtic 2-1 Rangers