As we get set for another meeting against Aberdeen, Celtic certainly have nothing to fear when they glance at Sam Cosgrove’s record.
Sure, the big Englishman has netted 19 goals this season (Transfermarkt). That’s a fine return for an Aberdeen forward, and he certainly knows how to find the net.
Cosgrove provides the Dons with real aerial presence too. He holds the ball up well for them, and his game has certainly evolved from the one who couldn’t hit a barn door when he arrived. Indeed, runs of 12 games without a goal are well in the past now.
You would think, looking at Cosgrove’s stats, that he would be worth fearing for Saturday then. Yet anyone who’s actually watched him against Celtic in the past will know that’s not the case.
His record against us has been absolutely dreadful since he signed for the Dons back in January 2018.
Cosgrove vs Celtic doesn’t read well for him
Overall, Cosgrove has featured against Celtic on nine occasions. How many has he scored in? One. That one goal came back in the 4-3 win over Aberdeen on Boxing Day at Pittodrie last season. Cosgrove’s goal also came from the penalty spot, meaning he’s still to score against us in open play.
Of course, that hardly matters if he’s racked up a fair few wins against us, right? Well he hasn’t managed that either. Once again, he only has one success over Celtic to look back on. That came back on trophy day in 2018. The day where, if we lost, Rangers would have gotten into second place. You could be forgiven for thinking more than a few Celtic players had an off-day.
In seven of Cosgrove’s nine appearances against us, Aberdeen have failed to score. That’s no surprise either when you watch the big man play against us. He struggles massively against the improved quality he’s up against.
He’ll start at Celtic Park on Saturday. Of that there’s nothing surer. Yet, those who watched November’s 4-0 hammering of the Dons could be forgiven for thinking Cosgrove wasn’t playing. He did, and for the full game too.
This weekend, he’ll be their main danger-man, but Christopher Jullien will know he can deal with him comfortably. So long as we remain concentrated at the back, Cosgrove won’t manage to be a threat. He doesn’t have the skillset to make an impact if his service is limited.
And even though records like his are there to be improved upon, there’s no reason to believe that’s going to happen this weekend at Parkhead.