Celtic make the short journey to Rugby Park, where Kilmarnock lay in wait this weekend. The Hoops can smell silverware now, knowing that only a few victories will mathematically seal the league title. Meanwhile, Kilmarnock are fighting for survival, currently residing in 10th position just a point above Ross County and three ahead of Dundee United.
Rugby Park has been a happy hunting ground for Celtic in recent times – the occasional draw aside. Although, the plastic pitch often makes for a less than free flowing game. Kilmarnock have also proved tricky customers at times. Indeed, they ran Celtic close in the Viaplay Cup Semi Final, albeit they have failed to register a goal against Ange Postecoglou’s men this season – the results being 5-0, 2-0 and 2-0 all in Celtic’s favour.
Kilmarnock have won just three games in their last 10. They suffered the ignominy of a Scottish Cup defeat to lowly Inverness Caledonian Thistle last month and come into the game on the back of a 2-0 defeat at Pittodrie.
Derek McInnes has deployed a 3-5-2 formation in recent weeks, which would be a delight for Celtic’s front three to face. It is the same set up that he has adopted against the Hoops before, and when theRangers defeat them at Ibrox recently. In reality, that’ll probably become a 5-3-2 when Derek’s team do not have the ball.
Space is thus likely to be at a premium, and on a slow pitch, it may need creativity from the likes of Jota and Hakšabanović to unlock the Killie defence. Hopefully Ange has the answers, as he seems to have had against every opponent this season.