St Mirren assistant "under no illusions" ahead of Celtic Park meeting

By Euan Davidson

August 20, 2021

St Mirren assistant boss Lee Sharp knows he’ll be leading his side against an in-form Celtic tomorrow.

The Buddies’ number 2 will be in the dugout for the Saturday kick-off. Jim Goodwin tested positive for Covid-19 this week, barring him from making it to Parkhead.

And while Sharp realises the task at hand, he’s not throwing in the towel either. St Mirren shocked the Bhoys in January, winning 2-1 and claiming their first away victory against Celtic in 31 years [BBC].

So far this season, St Mirren haven’t been at their best. A draw with 10-man Dundee and a loss to Hearts were topped by a penalty shoot-out defeat against Livingston in the Premier Sports Cup.

But Sharp remains confident, while realistic, ahead of tomorrow’s 3pm kick-off. He said [Daily Record]:

“We’re up against a team that’s bang in form at the moment, playing some really good football. We’re under no illusions of the enormity of the task ahead.

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“But we go there as prepared as we always are. The manager’s implemented what he wants early in the week and now we go there with our game plan in mind.

“It’s going to be tough, but if we implement our game plan we can make it as hard as possible for them.

“We can take encouragement from the fact we went there in January and won. You’ve got to be positive when you go there.”

St Mirren determined to make life hard for Celtic

In fairness to the Buddies, they were often an excellent watch last season. Jim Goodwin has utilised the transfer market well, and brought through some promising youngsters. It was probably unlucky that they didn’t finish in the top 6 last time out.

Celtic, meanwhile, are absolutely flying. 5 wins on the bounce have turned the mood of supporters on its head. From worrying in the summer, the Hoops have enraptured fans with attacking football, excellent signings and a generally more positive culture.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

There could be room for rotation tomorrow, although St Mirren aren’t to be taken lightly. The frenetic pace of our game under Ange Postecoglou dictates that, when he can, he’ll rest players wherever possible.

We could see James McCarthy make his first start for Celtic, while we’ve predicted Adam Montgomery to start ahead of the industrious Greg Taylor.

In any event, it should be a good one. Celtic will be looking for revenge against the Paisley side, while Lee Sharp will want to kick-start the Buddies’ stuttering season so far.

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