After suffering defeat in the Champions League in midweek, Celtic will look to end their week on a happier note.
Although Celtic are the kings of Scotland, they constantly fail to reign supreme on the continent and after suffering a 3-1 loss to RB Leipzig on Wednesday, it meant more European misery for Ange Postecoglou’s men.
While the result is almost symptomatic of Cetlic’s standing within the football ecosystem. Arguably too big for the Scottish game and nowhere near big enough to deal with the best that Europe has to offer.
Whether Celtic or Rangers by the same token can ever solve this conundrum, is something that remains to be seen and with both outfits’ Champions League participation soon to come a close, it is domestic warfare that will go back to the top of the agenda.
Especially as there are just two points separating the Glasgow giants and although the blue half of the city went top for a few hours last Saturday, natural order was restored in the green and white half later that afternoon.
Now though, it is Celtic who get the upcoming weekend’s action underway and with a trip to St Johnstone up next, it also offers the Hoops an opportunity to extend their lead to five points – until 5pm at least.
Last weekend saw them wrestle back top spot from their noisy neighbours and although it was not a classic performance at home to Motherwell, it was a welcome return to winning ways in the Scottish Premiership.
As for opponents and hosts St Johnstone, Callum Davidson’s side start the weekend lying 9th in the standings and with the middle of the table being so congested, ebb and flow is never too far away.
Successive wins and you find yourself in the European paying positions, successive defeats and you find yourself in the mix for the relegation play-off place. While after losing at Kilmarnock last weekend, they will be keen to avoid another loss at McDiarmid Park during this.
Unfortunately for them, I am not sure this is something they avoid and although Celtic lost their last away league outing, back-to-back slipups on the road are incredibly rare for them. Which is why I am opting for a St Johnstone defeat on Sunday.
With their being little to no value in simply backing the away win before kick-off, it is goals that have piqued my interest and with Kyogo Furuhashi having already scored seven in the league this season, I am putting him down for at least two more at odds of 9/4.
While in addition to this, I also have another selection up my sleeve and although Celtic lost by this same score in midweek, I think 3-1 will go in their direction – especially as four of their last 20 away league outings have ended this way and this why I am backing it odds of 10/1.