Celtic v Inverness: Team news, match officials, KO time & where to watch

Celtic face Inverness Caledonian Thistle in the 2023 Scottish Cup Final on Saturday 3rd June at Hampden. Ange Postecoglou’s team go into the game ninety minutes away from sealing a record-breaking eighth Treble, which would cap off a stunning season for the club. Whilst the background noise has been about Tottenham Hotspur, focus will shift onto Celtic for Saturday’s game as the team look to put their opponents from the Championship side from the Highlands to the sword.

With Celtic fans in over 70% of the seats – although few of those will be used by a support  that prefers to stand at Hampden and at all away venues come to think of it – the team will not be without substantial backing. With speculation ongoing about what happens next for the Celtic manager he has nevertheless removed that from his mind and has been 100% focused on making sure that his team is at its best tomorrow for what could be another truly memorable Hampden in the Sun afternoon.

Our Ghirls brought the Women’s Scottish Cup home last weekend with a dominant performance over theRangers, now it’s the Bhoys turn to complete the silverware collection for the season.

Team News

Alistair Johnston and Kyogo hobbled off last weekend against Aberdeen but they are due to be back into the squad, along with Sead Hakšabanović, who missed the Trophy Day win through injury. Unfortunately, Aaron Mooy will miss the Cup Final with an ongoing back injury whilst Cameron Carter-Vickers remains out but is just a few weeks away from resuming training so should be fit and ready to go for next season.

In goals, club No.1 Joe Hart will start. The Englishman will look to join a select club of players to have won all the honours available in both the English and Scottish game with a win tomorrow. Only Kenny Dalglish has achieved that legitimately (ie no secretive and unlawful tax avoidance schemes were involved).

In defence, Carl Starfelt will start at the heart of the defence with Tomoki Iwata. The decision to prefer the more experienced Iwata to the work in progress Yuki Kobayashi against Aberdeen was telling as  the manager considered his options for tomorrow’s final. Greg Taylor and Alistair Johnston start in the full-back berths.

In midfield, Callum McGregor will captain the side and will play alongside Reo Hatate and Matt O’Riley, who will complete the season having participated in every game.

Kyogo Furuhashi of Celtic scores his team’s opening goal during the Cinch Scottish Premiership match between Celtic and Aberdeen at Celtic Park Stadium on May 24, 2023 (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

In attack, Kyogo will lead the line with Daizen Maeda on the left and Jota on the right. Liel Abada’s stand-out performance in the first 45 minutes last weekend, remember Daizen was suspended after picking up a red card at Easter Road, may have given Ange Postecoglou something to think about. There’s a side benefit it playing the Israeli international in that it allows Jota to play in the left wing, surely his best position?

Predicted XI: Hart; Johnston, Iwata, Starfelt, Taylor; McGregor, Hatate, O’Riley; Jota, Kyogo and Maeda.

Kick-Off Time

The game kicks off at 5:30pm (Celtic Park Time). This is novel after the game’s governing body elected to move the match from the traditional 3pm slot in order to accommodate the FA Cup Final at Wembley but it has caused problems for supporters of both sides and has clearly resulted in less fans from the Highlands travelling down for the game.

Match Officials 

Match referee John Beaton (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

Our old pal John Beaton will have the whistle tomorrow hoping to get some material to use on the Rangers after-dinner circuit speeches in years to come. These guys actually dine out on their Honest Mistakes that always benefit the same group of clubs.  Beaton will be assisted by Graeme Stewart and Gordon Crawford while the fourth official at the Scottish Cup final will be David Dickinson.

Having Steven McLean anywhere near a Celtic v Inverness Scottish Cup match at Hampden is trolling of the lowest order from the Scottish FA but with a brass neck they have appointed McLean to head up the VAR duties and he will be assisted by Gary Hilland. The Scottish FA even have the brass neck to post the highlights of the 2015 semi-final on their Scottish Cup social media channels.

Where to Watch 

The game will be broadcast live on BBC One Scotland, BBC Scotland and BBC iPlayer. There will also be highlights on BBC One Scotland at 23:20. Viaplay will also be showing the Scottish Cup Final to their subscribers and the game will all be shown live on Celtic TV to subscribers based outside of Britain and Ireland.


About Author

Born just as Celtic were stopping the Ten, Lubo98 follows Celtic home and away and helps run his local Celtic Supporters Club. He goes to all the games and is a Law Graduate. Has a particular fondness for Tom Rogic among the current Celts and both Lubo and Henrik form his earliest Celtic memories.

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