St Johnstone vs CelticScottish Premiership, KO: 12:00 Dec 3, 2023, McDiarmid Park
CELTIC'S staff and players had a private audience with the Pope this week after yet another Champions League disappointment.
And they will be hoping he can send some divine intervention for the Hoops to defeat the Saints on Sunday when they travel to Perth.
Celtic's complete inability to compete in the Champions League has been widely discussed, but more concerning has been their patchy league form.
They have dropped points recently away at Hibs and last week at home to Motherwell and there's little doubt the return of Brendan Rodgers to Parkhead has yet to really catch the fans' imagination.
However, they remain well clear at the top of the league and will be enormous favourites to retain their title, but they will face stiff resistance against Craig Levein's St Johnstone.
The former Hearts and Scotland manager appears to have come in and sorted out a leaky defence. And the man who introduced 4-6-0 to the world is unlikely to employ a gung-ho tactic against Celtic either.
Celtic bounced back from their previous defeat in Europe to Atletico Madrid by hammering Aberdeen 6-0. But they are likely to find this a bit tougher at McDiarmid Park.
How the bookies view it
As always, Celtic are massive favourites here at 1/5 generally although Coral go 2/9 about an away win.
St Johnstone are as big as 14/1 with the same firm and the draw is 11/2 with Paddy Power.
Recent head to heads
St Johnstone have already handed Celtic a warning by claiming a goalless draw with them at Parkhead earlier this season.
That stopped a run of nine Celtic wins in a row in this fixture. Saints' last win over Celtic came seven years ago.
Players to watch
A fully fit Chris Kane is a boost for St Johnstone and he guarantees you a shift. He will be desperate to bag his first goal of the season and is 47/10 to do that with UniBet.
New Denmark international Matt O'Riley has been arguably Celtic's best player this season and has chipped in with an impressive six goals from midfield. He is 2/1 to get another one with bet365.
Anything else catch the eye?
There's little doubt Celtic should have enough to get the points here, but it's unlikely to be pretty and Saints could make it tough for them.
They have already frustrated Celtic in Glasgow this season and the call here is a Celtic win and under 2.5 goals at 3/1 with William Hill.
Saints find goals a big problem too so the obvious shout as well is a Celtic win to nil at evens with McBookie.com.
This Scottish Premiership match between St Johnstone and Celtic will be played on Dec 3, 2023 and kick off at 12:00. Check below for our tipsters best St Johnstone vs Celtic prediction. You may also visit our dedicated betting previews section for the most up to date previews.