Predicted Celtic line-up to face Partick Thistle in the Scottish League Cup
Celtic will hope to bounce back from the damaging defeat in the Champions League qualifiers when they travel to Partick Thistle on Saturday for the Scottish League Cup.
The Bhoys will not play in the Champions League group stage for the first time during Brendan Rodgers’ tenure after being dumped out by AEK Athens in Greece earlier this week.
Instead, Rodgers will lead Celtic into a Europa League play-off round meeting with Latvia’s Spartaks Jurmala or Suduva Marijampole of Lithuania. But first, the Celtic boss will have all eyes on progressing to the third round of the Scottish League Cup on Saturday.
Rodgers is highly unlikely to include Dedryck Boyata in the cup clash after he missed the Champions League qualifier.
Odsonne Edouard missed the AEK Athens game due to an injury and how long will he remain out is not yet confirmed.
Meanwhile, Moussa Dembele came in as a substitute against AEK Athens and could be in contention to start the game on Saturday.
Probable Celtic XI
Manager: Brendan Rodgers
Craig Gordon (GK)
Craig Gordon is Celtic’s No.1 in goal and that won’t change when they face Partick Thistle on Saturday.
Cristian Gamboa (RB)
Lustig’s form appears to have dipped considerably in the last few months and he was very poor against AEK Athens in the Champions League. Hence, there is no better time for Rodgers to drop Lustig and hand Gamboa a chance at right-back.
Kristoffer Ajer (CB)
Ajer was badly missed in Greece as AEK Athens tormented the centre-back pairing of Jozo Simunovic and Jack Hendry. His return to the starting line-up on Saturday is inevitable.
Jozo Simunovic (CB)
Simunovic is currently running on borrowed time, with a series of erratic displays not helping his cause. It’s high time he starts taking responsibilities and organises the defence well to stop Saturday’s opponents.
Kieran Tierney (LB)
There are no doubts about Tierney’s attacking abilities but he needs to improve his defensive side of the game if he is to become a complete full-back.
Scott Brown (CDM)
If Celtic are to advance to the next round of Scottish Cup, Brown’s presence in the team will be crucial. After all, he is the skipper of the team.
Olivier Ntcham (RCM)
Ntcham likes to have plenty of the ball but he needs to be really penetrative with his passing.
Tom Rogic (LCM)
Rogic had a rare off day at Athens in the Champions League but will be buoyant to go all out against Partick Thistle.
Scott Sinclair (LW)
Sinclair was a bright spot in the defeat at the hands of AEK Athens, coming on as a substitute and scoring with an unerring header. His positive display in Greece could hand him a start at the weekend.
Callum McGregor (RW)
McGregor is the player who adds creativity and thrust to Celtic’s attack. It will be important for him to have a good game if the Bhoys are to beat Partick Thistle.
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Moussa Dembele (ST)
With Edouard out with an unspecific injury, Dembele could lead Celtic’s attack. He added impetus to Celtic’s attack after coming on as a substitute against AEK Athens.