Celtic travel to Easter Road this weekend for a match that has been a very tough fixture in recent years. The Bhoys go into the game in mixed form. The memory of disaster against Sparta Prague is still fresh, though avenged by the 4-1 defeat of Motherwell in the following match. Those two games, both with a 4-1 scoreline, epitomise the nature of Celtic’s season so far. As a result, the clash against Hibs is must win tomorrow.
The hosts are in a similar position. Jack Ross has done a fine job so far with his Edinburgh side, amassing seven wins, three draws and as many losses in the league. The Hibees sit in fourth place, five points behind the Hoops, having played a game more.
Despite that decent return for the club, Hibs lost their Scottish Cup semi final against Hearts. Not only is defeat to a Championship side disappointing, but to lose a derby game of such magnitude could be really damaging. It was thus not much of a surprise when they followed up this defeat with a 2-0 loss against Aberdeen at Pittodrie.
Following those two defeats, Hibs returned to winning ways by beating Dundee 4-1 in the Betfred Cup. A quick look on the Hibees fan forums shows that supporters were unimpressed by their team’s performance, but a late flurry of goals resulted in a resounding victory thanks to a fantastic final 15 minutes.
Both clubs go into the match having won 4-1 to turn around some poor results. Celtic can take heart from that, given that the hosts of the tough fixture are wounded, but without the same quality at their disposal, let alone the boost that many Celtic players have got from good international performances and qualification.