IT has all gone a bit Christmas Carol at Celtic Park, even though there’s very little singing going on with the Green Brigade still being frozen out.
One of the refrains that did ring out in last weekend’s defeat by Hearts was a ghost of Christmas past as “sack the board” got an airing, bringing back memories of the early 90s.
Club finances had more in common with the Cratchits than Ebenezer Scrooge in those days but fans now view those in charge as wealthy misers, with £70million in the bank and a malfunctioning team on the pitch.
The ghost of Christmas present has been pretty scary for those punters with Celtic blowing a healthy lead over Rangers thanks to successive Premiership defeats against Kilmarnock and the Jambos.
But it’s the ghost of Christmas future that’s truly sending a shiver down the spine as the nightmare scenario of Gers becoming top dogs again brings supporters out in a cold sweat.
They will be hoping the Kerrydale Street Scrooges see the error of their ways and hand Brendan Rodgers some serious dough to spend in January.
There’s still three games to go before the winter break and Rodgers needs to find a way to rouse his players and keep the Hoops at the summit.
They host rock-bottom Livingston today and McBookie make Celtic 1/10 hot favourites to get back on track.
But Rodgers’ side have drawn against the likes of St Johnstone and Motherwell at home this season after struggling to break down teams who have parked the bus.
David Martindale is likely to follow suit and it could be a long afternoon if the champions fail to make an early breakthrough.
The main problem for Celtic in recent weeks is they have been focusing all their play down the flanks and none of their wingers has been in particularly good form.
That’s leading to lots of corners as crosses hit off defenders instead of their targets in the box.
Backing Celtic flag kicks has paid off plenty of times for me this season so I’m going for that market again here, with Livi defending deep.
Over 11 match corners looks good at evens with Bet365 who have the same price for Celtic -8 in that handicap.
Rangers are on the road at Motherwell tomorrow and it’s hard to see them dropping points against a team who have now gone 14 matches without a victory.
Backing Philippe Clement’s side to be winning at half-time and full-time pays 21/20 with McBookie and that looks decent value.
The game of the weekend probably comes at Tynecastle today as St Mirren look to leap above Hearts into third place.
Fantastic home form is the reason why the Buddies are flying so high but they’ve travelled about as well as a queasy toddler.
It’s five defeats in a row on the road for St Mirren so the Jambos look overpriced at evens with Coral.
One of the biggest talking points this week has been Derek Adams’ rant about the standard of football in the Premiership and his claim old club Morecambe were 100 times better than the Staggies side he inherited.
As motivational speeches go, it seemed Morecambe and Unwise so it will be interesting to see what kind of reaction we get from his Ross County players at home to Hibs today.
Adams had a cheek moaning about the entertainment on offer, given tightening things up seems to have been his priority.
Kilmarnock’s clash with St Johnstone in Aryshire should be close and the half-time draw appeals at 11/10 (McBookie).
Aberdeen head to Dens in the other game and I’m going to back Dundee -1 in the corner handicap (6/5, BetVictor).
- Over 11 corners at Celtic (evs, Bet365)
- Hearts win (evs, Coral)
- HT draw at Killie (11/10 McBookie)
- One-goal win Dingwall (5/4, McBookie)