What a way to finish off 2018 in the Scottish Premiership, as Rangers welcome bitter rivals Celtic in the Old Firm Derby. First v second, Gerrard v Rodgers, Rangers v Celtic, whichever way you look at this clash it has box office written all over it. With Celtic now three-points clear at the top of the table this is one that Steven Gerrard’s team cannot afford to lose. Form Labs bring you their betting preview and tips for the much-anticipated clash and don’t forget to check out our massive selection of enhanced odds for the game.
Old Firm Derby Rangers v Celtic Preview – Stiliyan Petrov
Title Race Wide Open
This is the first time in many a year where there’s actually been a title race rather than a green and white procession in Scotland. However, Celtic have now arrived at the summit following their last gasp 4-3 victory over Aberdeen, which featured an astonishing five goals in the final 15 minutes.
We’re not expecting quite such a frantic finale here, but we should still be in for an entertaining encounter with these two by far and away the divisions’ top scorers.
Goals Like Before?
Although the three encounters between these two sides in all competitions between March and April this year each yielded a minimum of four goals, with Celtic winning by an aggregate of 12-2, their sole meeting in the current campaign finished just 1-0 to the Hoops.
The Gers are certainly nearer their level this term and that means the result of the Old Firm derby isn’t just a mere formality like it has been in recent years.
Celtic may have won 10 of 12 unbeaten games since Rangers were promoted back to the top flight, but though they dominated the last meeting (hitting the woodwork four times) Steven Gerrard’s men could point to a refereeing decision as the difference that day.
Celtic’s Away Form Patchy
That game came at Celtic Park back in early September, but it’s also worth noting that the visitors’ away form is patchy at best as they’ve gone W4-D3-L3 this term – with half of those wins against teams down in the bottom three.
Indeed, they’ve conceded five across their last two on the road, and that should offer the Gers encouragement as 64% of their output has come at Ibrox this term as they’ve turned it into something of a fortress.
With the gap between these two narrowing, Celtic appear far too short at evens and the stalemate seems a far more likely outcome.
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*odds subject to change.