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Kilmarnock logo
Scottish Premiership | Gameweek 17
Dec 10, 2023 at 12pm UK
Rugby Park
Celtic logo
2 - 1
Phillips (75' og.), Kennedy (87')
Lyons (41'), Deas (69'), Armstrong (79')
FT(HT: 0-1)
O'Riley (33')
Johnston (83')

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

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

Celtic will attempt to continue their undefeated start to the 2023-24 Scottish Premiership campaign when they make the trip to Kilmarnock on Sunday.

The hosts ended a three-match run without a victory in midweek, with the focus for them now being on trying to be more consistent.

Match preview

Kilmarnock players in action against Celtic on April 16, 2023© Reuters

Kilmarnock picked up three points in midweek after defeating Aberdeen 1-0, but they had to be patient to achieve that as David Watson found the back of the net in the 92nd minute.

The ability to push until the very end of the game is a positive trait for the team, and that is something that will be important this weekend when they face the current league leaders.

Killie have lacked consistency in the first half of the campaign which is reflected by them sitting in mid-table, but a positive run throughout winter has the potential of pushing them up the division.

A win on Sunday could see them climb as high as third place if other results go in their favour, which should provide enough momentum for the squad.

However, they will need to put together a stronger performance than the last time they faced Celtic in the league, as that fixture led to the Hoops picking up a 3-1 win.

Celtic players pose for a team group photo before the match on November 7, 2023© Reuters

Brendan Rodgers will be expecting to see the same level of quality from his team that they displayed in that match and throughout the entire campaign to maintain their undefeated start to the season.

Celtic have yet to be beaten in their first 16 matches in the Scottish Premiership which has allowed them to create an eight-point gap over their closest challengers.

The Hoops reacted well to losing in the Champions League group stage, following it up with consecutive wins in the league, the latest of which took place in midweek.

Celtic dominated against Hibernian by picking up a 4-1 victory as Luis Palma and Matt O'Riley got on the scoresheet while Oh Hyeon-gyu bagged a brace.

The attacking display is just a taste of what the team has been delivering throughout the entire season, with no team in the division having scored more goals than them, showcasing the threat they will provide on Sunday.

Kilmarnock Scottish Premiership form:

Celtic Scottish Premiership form:

Celtic form (all competitions):

Team News

Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers on October 4, 2023© Reuters

It is unlikely any defensive changes will be made to the Kilmarnock starting XI coming off the back of a clean sheet as they prepare to face the strongest attacking team in the division.

Kyle Magennis and Innes Cameron are both on the sidelines at the moment due to injuries, and it is expected that Kilmarnock will be without their services once again.

Hyunjun Yang was dropped out of the matchday squad completely in midweek by Rodgers, and it remains to be seen whether he will be brought back in this weekend.

Oh did manage to make an impression with his opportunity though after finding the back of the net twice, and he will be expected to keep his place because of that.

That is a positive situation for Rodgers considering he remains without Reo Hatate as he is on the shelf with his hamstring strain.

Kilmarnock possible starting lineup:
Dennis; Mayo, Deas, Findlay; Armstrong, Watson, Lyons, Donnelly, Ndaba; Watkins, Vassell

Celtic possible starting lineup:
Hart; A. Johnston, Carter-Vickers, Scales, Taylor; O'Riley, McGregor, Turnbull; M. Johnston, Oh, Palma

SM words green background

We say: Kilmarnock 0-2 Celtic

Kilmarnock might not have been consistent this season, but they have managed to provide upsets and prove to be stubborn opposition throughout the campaign.

While that will lead to the hosts providing a competitive game, the quality that Celtic possess should be enough to see them through here.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting an away 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.Away Win:data

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Celtic's Kyogo Furuhashi celebrates scoring their first goal with teammates Matt O'Riley and Daizen Maeda on October 4, 2023
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