The SPFL Reserve League has undergone a quick fixture change that gives Celtic more hope for their title chances.
The Hoops were scheduled to play St Johnstone this Friday. Rangers then had their final game at Falkirk on Monday – wrapping up the reserve league calendar for the season.
The two teams are currently deadlocked on points – separated only by goal difference. Tommy McIntyre’s young Hoops sit three goals behind Graeme Murty’s starlets.
Therefore, what the original fixtures meant was that Rangers would’ve known what they had to do to win the league. Celtic couldn’t have had a trophy presentation post-match, regardless of how many they defeated St Johnstone by.
But it’s set up for a tense helicopter Monday shootout between the two sides, with Celtic playing on the Monday at the same time as Rangers – 2pm. Celtic have to seriously romp St Johnstone if Rangers get the job done at Falkirk. But at the very least, it puts more pressure on Rangers to get the win as the young Hoops will be playing at the same time.
Celtic should have the confidence
Celtic, of course, have a real confidence booster now heading into the final day. They just defeated their Glasgow rivals 3-2 in the Glasgow Cup final at Celtic Park.
That win came after several of the under-20s played in the under-18 Youth Cup final defeat to Rangers last Thursday night at Hampden. But it was also revenge for every Celtic player on Monday night. That’s because Rangers beat Celtic 2-0 in the reserve league just several weeks ago too.
McIntyre could be without captain Kerr McInroy for Monday’s match at Lennoxtown. He missed the Glasgow Cup final after picking up an injury in the last league match against Motherwell.
But Celtic should hopefully have enough firepower to overcome Saints in convincing fashion regardless.
Should both sides lose on the final day, Hibernian will actually take the title instead. The Hibees currently sit top of the reserve league as it stands, but they’ve played all of their matches and are level on points with both Celtic and Rangers.
It now remains to be seen if our youngsters truly will rue that poor loss to Rangers a few weeks ago. But no matter what happens on Monday, at least they secured some silverware in the form of the Glasgow Cup this term.