Glasgow Derby Predictions, 7 & 8 – High hopes that Hatate will make the difference

Our two Irish lads James French and Conall McGinty give their Glasgow Derby assessments and scoreline predictions..

Reo Hatate of Celtic (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Clement was coy and bullish, Rodgers was much calmer and cleverer

Celtic and theRangers are separated by just a single point in the league table. But both clubs are divided by more points, as we all know.

The build up to the game this week has seemed unusually quiet compared to previous Glasgow Derby’s, even more unusual considering this Sunday stands as the biggest game between Scotland’s top two in half a decade.

Phillipe Clement spoke of wanting passionate players, “not mathmeticians”, while Brendan Rodgers emphasised the importance of calm heads.

Clement was coy and bullish in his pre-match comments, pointing to the fact his Rangers side have scored more and conceded less than Celtic since the last game between the two, while Rodgers was much calmer and cleverer in his pre-game presser.

The Irishman spoke of “not getting entrenched in the whole storyline”, staying calm but also attacking the game, in defence and attack. Celtic have epitomised the perfect balance between staying calm but also playing on the front foot in both Glasgow derby games this season. This Celtic team may not have the vintage aura that previous sides have possessed, but what they do possesses is a manager who thrives in these games.

Rodgers has managed in 15 fixtures against theRangers, winning 12, drawing twice and losing just once.

Predicting the outcome in these games is nailed on impossible, but I will attempt to do so regardless. Kyogo Furuhashi has played a big part in both games versus theRangers this season and last, but I expect his Japanese compatriot Reo Hatate to prove to be the difference on Sunday.

Celtic will be given space and opportunities to hurt theRangers in transitions, and regardless of Hatate’s tendency to give possession away, he has the quality to pick holes in theRangers’ defensive structure. I think that theRangers will probably score tomorrow, but I expect Celtic to win regardless.

Prediction: Rangers 1-2 Celtic
Scorers: Hatate, Idah

James French

Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers  (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Celtic Players, management and supporters laser focused on success 

I’m feeling really confident heading into this one. After a rather disappointing season so far things seem to be aligning at exactly the right time for Celtic, with long term absentees returning from injury and the players all starting to hit form just in time for what looks like being a blockbuster run in.

The atmosphere around the club has been positive recently with fan grievances with the board put aside until the end of the season, it seems that the players, our management team and the fans are all laser focused on making this a successful campaign.

Brendan Rodgers finally has his full squad at his disposal on Sunday and that’s what I think will make the difference. Man for man we are better than our opponents and we will prove it in front of the Ibrox hordes. I’m going for a score of 2-1 to Celtic, with Hatate claiming the first goal in a man of the match performance.
Conall McGinty

Meanwhile Celtic FC Foundation, the charitable arm of Celtic Football Club, has made a donation of £6600 to meet the £40k target required to allow Scotland’s men’s national deaf team to play in this year’s European Championships in Turkey. Read the full story on Celtic Shorts, link the article below….

ON CELTIC SHORTS…“A huge round of applause to Celtic FC for their kindness,” Scottish Deaf FA

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About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor David Faulds has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email


  1. Under Ange last season, we went into these games against the scum, feeling like we just weren’t going to lose these games that mattered against the scum?
    This season under Rodgers, them feelings of such confidence hasn’t really been there for such large parts of this season to date imo?
    Until now?
    Returning players, and key players starting to produce the form, that’s been missing from them for large chunks of the season are massive factors currently imo?
    No doubt we still remain with a huge physiological advantage over the scum and there serial losers?
    Even the extra pressure will be upon the scum and the zombies will be quick enough to turn, especially if we take control of the game?
    As a package, I just fail to see how we could possibly lose to the scum imo?
    Also need to play in a manner to take the cheating officials out of the game, especially with the agenda of helping out the scum at every possible chance arising?
    So still a few factors will have to be overcomed tomorrow, which will require a good mentality from ourselves?
    But this has hugely increased recently, and far better than what the scum have to offer, along with the improvements within confidence throughout the whole team, with far better quality within it?
    As long as we are a bit more clinical than usual, then this could well be a quite comfortable afternoon all the same imo?
    Celtic 3. Scum 0