Celtic host St Johnstone in the fifth round of the Scottish Cup on Sunday as they aim to win the competition for the third year in succession.
Brendan Rodgers’ side defied an injury crisis to pick up a 2-0 win over Hibs on Wednesday, with Ryan Christie and Ollie Burke on target for the Parkhead side.
Up next are the 2014 Scottish Cup winners, who suffered a 2-1 reverse to Hamilton in midweek, dealing a significant blow to their hopes of finishing in the top six of the Premiership standings.
|Game||Celtic vs St Johnstone|
|Date||Sunday, February 10|
|Time||1:30pm GMT / 8:30am ET|
TV Channel, Live Stream & How To Watch
In the United States (US), the game can be watched via ESPN+.
|US TV channel||Online stream|
In the UK, the game can be watched on Premier Sports 1 and streamed via Premier Player.
|UK TV channel||Online stream|
|Premier Sports 1||Premier Player|
Squads & Team News
|Goalkeepers||Gordon, Bain, De Vries|
|Defenders||Simunovic, Ajer, Hendry, Compper, Izaguirre, Miller, Lustig, Gamboa, Ralston|
|Midfielders||Bitton, Mulumbu, Brown, Allan, Benyu, Christie, Hayes, Sinclair, Morgan, Rogic, McGregor|
|Forwards||Johnston, Burke, Weah, Edouard|
Celtic’s immense injury list shows little sign of easing, with Emilio Izaguirre doubtful following a knock picked up in midweek. Furthermore, there are doubts over Olivier Ntcham and Odsonne Edouard.
A raft of regulars are laid up, including Kieran Tierney, Tom Rogic and James Forrest, because of physical complaints, while Leigh Griffiths is still on leave.
Anthony Ralston, Filip Benkovic, Eboue Kouassi and Daniel Arzani all miss out, too.
Possible Celtic starting XI: Bain; Toljan, Simunovic, Boyata, Izaguirre; Brown, McGregor; Weah, Christie, Sinclair; Burke
|Position||St Johnstone squad|
|Goalkeepers||Clark, Bell, Hurst|
|Defenders||Shaughnessy, Kerr, Gordon, Tanser, Easton, Foster, Comrie, Keown|
|Midfielders||Davidson, Goss, Callachan, McCann, Wotherspoon, Alston, Craig, Swanson|
|Forwards||O'Halloran, Kennedy, Watt, Kane, Henry|
St Johnstone are without Drey Wright due to injury but otherwise have a full selection of players to pick from.
Niall Keown could be in line to make his debut in the defence in some capacity.
Possible St Johnstone starting XI: Clark; Foster, Kerr, Shaughnessy, Tanser; Kennedy, Davidson, Goss, O’Halloran; Alston, Watt
Betting & Match Odds
Celtic are favourites to come out on top, with bet365 offering odds of 1/5 on a Bhoys victory. St Johnstone are considered a 14/1 bet to win, while a draw is 5/1.
After a slow start to the season by their incredible standards, Celtic’s quest for the treble-treble remains very much on track.
They have already won the League Cup this season, winning the trophy thanks to a controversial Ryan Christie penalty against Aberdeen, while they have established a six-point advantage over Rangers in the race for the title, having shaken off their other challengers since the winter break.
Indeed, the Bhoys have come back following the recess in utterly formidable fashion. They have played six games, winning them all and not even conceding a single goal.
Among those successes was a trip to face St Johnstone at McDiarmid Park last weekend, in which they came out 2-0 victors thanks to late goals from James Forrest and Tim Weah.
Indeed, Sunday’s clash will complete a mini-series against the Perth outfit, who they had also faced four days earlier in a rearranged match. That also finished 2-0, though Callum McGregor and Christie were on target.
There is little doubt that Celtic are a team gaining in both strength and confidence, augmented by an impressive list of January arrivals, with Weah already having established himself as force.
“The team are playing well,” Rodgers said in midweek. “There are always areas we look at that we could be better in, but we’re enjoying our football. It’s tight at the top but all you can do is focus on your own performance.
“I think what’s been good about the team is that we’ve been defending really well. The goalkeeper shouldn’t have much to do if we’re pressing well, and that’s been the case.”
And all this has been achieved despite a formidable injury list, which has seen more than a whole starting XI sidelined at times.
St Johnstone, meanwhile, have been a team on the slide, with the 2-1 midweek loss to Hamilton a fourth defeat in as many outings.
Prior to that encounter, manager Tommy Wright had described the match as “the most important of the season” as his side bid to keep on the coattails on the top five.
Now he must find a way to rouse his team against opponents they have not beaten in their last 11 matches.