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Dec 12, 2021 at 3pm UK
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Preview: Celtic vs. Motherwell - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Celtic vs. Motherwell - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Sunday's Scottish Premiership clash between Celtic and Motherwell, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Celtic shall be aiming to extend their four-match winning streak on Sunday when they return to league action, hosting Motherwell in their latest fixture.

Meanwhile, the Steelmen have the possibility of climbing into the top four if they can end that run and get back to winning ways themselves.

Match preview

Celtic have been in fine form as of late - despite a sluggish start to the season they have quickly reasserted themselves as challengers for the SPL.

The Hoops only sit four points behind Rangers and they shall be hoping to continue the pressure at the weekend, especially since the Gers face third-placed Hearts.

Ange Postecoglou's team were involved in a frantic five-goal thriller in midweek as they defeated Real Betis 3-2 in the Europa League, but it was not enough to progress into the next round.

However, in the league, they have also been putting on impressive performances, with their previous two fixtures resulting in six points as they secured consecutive clean sheets in the process.

Defensively, the squad have been sound this season as no team in the league have conceded fewer times than the Hoops as they have only let in 10 goals throughout the campaign.

That is something Motherwell will be wary of, especially since they have struggled to find the back of the net as of late, scoring just twice in their previous three matches.

Despite the lack of goals, the Steelmen are undefeated in their previous two matches after a victory against Dundee United was followed up by a draw against Hibernian.

They faced the Hibees in their most recent match and a second-half finish from Tony Watt helped his team earn the point on the day.

However, the last time Graham Alexander's team competed against Celtic they failed to find the back of the net and ended up being defeated 2-0 thanks to goals from Jota and David Turnbull.

However, with Motherwell level on points with Dundee United at the moment, a victory could potentially see them climb up into the top four, which is something they are pushing towards.

Celtic Scottish Premiership form:
  • W
  • D
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W

Celtic form (all competitions):
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • W
  • W

Motherwell Scottish Premiership form:
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • D

Motherwell form (all competitions):
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • D

Team News

Celtic do have several lengthy injuries in Christopher Jullien and Karamoko Dembele due to knee and ankle problems, but this is something that the club have adapted to throughout the campaign.

Jota missed out on the recent Europa League fixture due to his hamstring issue and it is unknown whether or not he will be fit enough to appear this weekend.

Frustratingly for the Hoops Kyogo Furuhashi appears to now also be injured as he had to be replaced against Real Betis due to a problem with his leg.

To make matters worse, he had only come on from the bench during the first half because fellow striker Albian Ajeti was dealing with a hamstring issue, stretching the attacking options at the club.

It is not just Celtic dealing with injury problems though, as both Ricki Lamie and Kaiyne Woolery had to be replaced during Motherwell's recent match with Hibernian.

The Steelmen are struggling at the back in terms of numbers, but the opportunity has now opened up for Jake Carroll to slot into that position this weekend.

Celtic possible starting lineup:
Hart; Juranovic, Carter-Vickers, Starfelt, Taylor; Johnston, McGregor, Forrest; Rogic, Turnbull, Abada

Motherwell possible starting lineup:
Kelly; O'Donnell, Mugabi, Carroll, McGinley; Goss, Cornelius, Slattery; Watt, Van Veen, Shields

We say: Celtic 2-0 Motherwell

Celtic have been in terrific form as of late and facing them is something that most teams will not be looking forward to at the moment because of that.

Their ability to blend brilliant defensive performances with attacking quality is something that should lead to them securing three points at the weekend.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 2.5 goals 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.Over 2.5:data

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