Our view: Celtic won't want to risk three players at Kilmarnock

By Connor Gordon

January 22, 2020

Celtic go into tonight’s match at Kilmarnock hoping for more than the three points. Neil Lennon will be praying his players get through the 90+ minutes unscathed.

The Rugby Park pitch hasn’t been a favourable one for the Scottish champions in recent years.

With the added incentive of a title race, tonight’s match is more than just another game for the Celts.

Celtic unlikely to play Jozo Simunovic at Kilmarnock

One man who is almost a certainty to sit out is centre-back Jozo Simunovic.

Jozo Simunovic will be a surprise conclusion for Celtic at Kilmarnock tonight. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

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The Croatian is a walking sick note who is only making his way back from another spell out.

Lennon won’t want to risk Simunovic, especially when numbers at the back are already dwindling.

However, it will mean rushing back another crock, Kristoffer Ajer, into the team.

Will Tom Rogic sit out the Rugby Park crunch match?

In a similar vein, Rogic is another injured player that Lennon may not want to risk tonight.

Tom Rogic is returning from another injury. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

The game will be a difficult one for the Australian international who won’t get a lot of time on the ball.

Rugby Park’s pitch will be difficult for Rogic to play to his strengths. It will be all about route one for the Scottish champions and anything silky will be a risk.

Daniel Arzani unlikely to make another moonlighting performance

Another silky man that would be a surprise if he features is Rogic’s fellow countryman, Daniel Arzani.

Daniel Arzani made his long awaited return at the weekend. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)

The Manchester City loanee has barely played for the club due to a lengthy injury. But, he did make it on during the weekend’s cup tie win over Partick Thistle for a few minutes.

Lennon definitely won’t want to risk a further aggravation for Arzani’s injury due to his injury. The pitch will be too tight for him to get a free role which will also limit his game.

The Bhoys played with no wide players against the Jags at the weekend with a closed diamond in the midfield. It wouldn’t be entirely surprising if Lennon uses the same shape and personnel for Kilmarnock tonight.