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Preview: Celtic vs. Aberdeen - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Scottish Premiership clash between Celtic and Aberdeen, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Celtic welcome Aberdeen to Parkhead on Saturday afternoon for what could be a crucial Scottish Premiership clash.

The Hoops are in turmoil after last week's defeat to Ross County, and are hunting for a new manager following the resignation of Neil Lennon.


Match preview

Celtic manager Neil Lennon pictured on November 5, 2020© Reuters

Assistant manager John Kennedy will take charge of the Bhoys on Saturday afternoon, with Celtic chairman Dermot Desmond frantically searching for a replacement for Lennon.

Current Scotland manager Steve Clarke has been mooted as one possible candidate, while Celtic legend Pat Bonner has urged the club's board to consider Jesse Marsch, currently in charge of RB Salzburg.

Belgium coach Roberto Martinez, whose assistant is former Celt Shaun Maloney, is another possible candidate, according to reports in the Scottish media.

Celtic's hopes of 10 titles in a row this season have been blitzed by rivals Rangers, who are now 18 points clear of the Hoops at the top of the table.

The Gers need just seven points to claim the title and Celtic's focus now must be on taking as many points as possible between now and the end of the season.

The Hoops have won 24 of their last 27 home matches against Aberdeen in all competitions, and are undefeated in 35 of their last 38 home league matches.

The two sides last met on February 17 at Celtic Park, with the home side winning 1-0 on that occasion.

Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes has endured his own share of tribulations in recent times, with his own position being considered under threat after fan protests.

The Dons have managed to cling onto fourth place in the league table, however, despite some indifferent recent form.

McInnes's team have not scored in their last four away league games, but bounced back from the recent defeat at Celtic by winning 1-0 at Kilmarnock last Saturday.

One player with whom McInnes has been pleased is 19-year-old midfielder Dean Campbell, who has added some "bite" to his game in recent weeks according to his manager.

Aberdonian Campbell came through the club's youth system and has looked impressive in his three starts against St Mirren, Celtic and Kilmarnock.

The Dons are playing Celtic at the right time, especially after a decent 1-0 win over Killie last weekend, and that poor record in the East End of Glasgow could be about to end.

Celtic Scottish Premiership form: WWWWWL

Aberdeen Scottish Premiership form: DLLDLW
Aberdeen form (all competitions): Delete this line if irrelevant


Team News

Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes pictured in November 22, 2020© Reuters

Celtic winger James Forrest remains a long-term absentee with an ankle injury, though he is nearing a return to action.

Defender Christopher Jullien is still out of action with a knee injury.

Aberdeen striker Fraser Hornby, who joined the club during the January transfer window, looks like being out for the season with a thigh injury.

Ryan Hedges is also sidelined for the long term, as is Greg Leigh with a hamstring problem. Johnny Hayes missed the game against Killie with a hamstring problem and he is a doubt for the weekend.

Celtic possible starting lineup:
Bain; Kenny, Welsh, Ajer, Taylor; Brown; Rogic, Turnbull; McGregor; Christie, Edouard

Aberdeen possible starting lineup:
Lewis; Hoban, Taylor, Considine; McLennan, McCrorie, Ferguson, Campbell, McGinn; Kamberi, Hendry


SM words green background

We say: Celtic 1-1 Aberdeen

Managerless Celtic look to be a team with significant problems but they are still a formidable force on their own ground.

Aberdeen have struggled to score goals away from home in recent weeks so this game looks like being a low-scoring draw.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting a home win in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Home Win:data


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General view of Aberdeen's Pittodrie Stadium from 2008
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
CRangersRangers33285078106889
2Celtic33209466244269
3Hibernian33168944311356
4Aberdeen331310103231149
5Livingston33128134041-144
6St Johnstone331010133440-640
7St Mirren331010133038-840
8Dundee UnitedDundee Utd33912122943-1439
9Motherwell3398163251-1935
10Ross County3385202659-3329
11Kilmarnock3384213347-1428
12Hamilton AcademicalHamilton3369183160-2927

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