Hearts pundits predict experienced XI for Celtic Cup Final clash

By Euan Davidson

December 19, 2020

Pundits are suggesting that Celtic will face a team of veterans in tomorrow’s Scottish Cup Final.

The Scottish Sun and Edinburgh Live have both predicted Hearts to line up with a 4-2-3-1/4-5-1. Christophe Berra, Craig Gordon, Steven Naismith and Andy Halliday are all expected to start.

Hearts boast plenty of experience in their ranks, but sources disagree on how the attacking side of the Jambos’ game will look.

The Sun went with a front 4 of Halliday, Naismith, Walker and Boyce. Edinburgh Live, however, expect the impressive Josh Ginnelly to start.

Ginnelly has scored twice in three Championship outings (WhoScored?). The Preston loanee (Transfermarkt) was picked out as one to watch by Not the Old Firm’s Ben Banks.

The 23-year-old Englishman has found opportunities limited in his home country, but at Hearts he’s provided a real attacking spark.


Craig Gordon celebrates a Celtic goal / (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

Ex-Celtic man Gordon leads experienced Hearts side

Craig Gordon is a known quantity, of course. An excellent shot-stopper with fantastic reactions, he’s still a top goalie with plenty to offer. Unfortunately, he just didn’t see enough action during his latter months at Celtic Park.

Neil Lennon preferred Fraser Forster between the sticks, but the Scotland keeper insists there’s “no bad blood” (BBC) between himself and the Celtic hierarchy. He does represent a major threat to our Scottish Cup Final chances, however. Even at 37, he’s collecting clean sheets in Scotland’s second tier (Transfermarkt).

Berra is another name who had been written off in the past. Although Mihai Popescu has impressed at Tynecastle this season (WhoScored?), it’s likely that the former Scotland defender’s experience will be a vital asset for Hearts boss Robbie Neilson.

Most likely lining up next to Craig Halkett, Berra is one of many Scottish players set to feature tomorrow. Another, Andy Halliday, is a meme as far as Celtic fans are concerned. However, he’s been a good fit for the Jam Tarts and seems nailed-on to start tomorrow.

Meanwhile, Chris Sutton has picked out his preferred Celtic XI for tomorrow’s showpiece final.