It hasn’t been the easiest week for Celtic, as the club suffered two extremely disappointing defeats to Rangers and Milan. Still, there isn’t time for Neil Lennon and the Celtic players to dwell on those results, as the Hoops are in action on Sunday lunchtime in a Scottish Premiership trip to Aberdeen.
It seems like more than just three points are on the line at Pittodrie. A win would see the pressure ease on Neil Lennon, whilst a draw, or even a defeat, would see the manager under massive pressure. He has to pick a team that will win the game, get the Hoops back on track and ease the pressure on all at the club.
With that in mind, here is the team we predict that Neil Lennon will select for the game against Aberdeen:
Manager will back his signing
Vasilis Barkas didn’t enjoy the best of nights against Milan, but he wasn’t to blame for any of the goals that the team conceded. He is a Neil Lennon signing, the manager will back him, and he will start the game.
We predict that Neil Lennon will stick with the 4-2-3-1 formation that improved Celtic’s performance against Milan in the second-half. With that in mind, the two full-backs we expect to play are Diego Laxalt on the left, and Jeremie Frimpong on the right.
Laxalt was excellent against Milan, and Frimpong performed well in the second-half, therefore both players get the nod.
The two centre-backs; there is no doubt that Kristoffer Ajer will be one. He was the best centre-back by a mile against Milan. Alongside him, it has to be Shane Duffy. Stephen Walsh deserves a break, and Duffy owes Celtic a big performance after two poor ones in the last week.
Big player won’t be dropped for big game
As for midfield, some people might not like this, but Scott Brown is certain to start. Celtic might have played well when he was subbed against Milan, but there is no way that Neil Lennon is going to Leave Brown out of the side for a trip to Aberdeen. He will be partnered by Callum McGregor. Same as Duffy, he owes Celtic a big game on Sunday.
Further forward, we expect the trio who came on in the second-half against Milan to start against Aberdeen. Ryan Christie and Tom Rogic can provide the skills and guile ahead of Brown and McGregor. Whilst Mo Elyounoussi can play as the second striker.
As for the lone striker, we predict that Leigh Griffiths will get the nod. He has performed well against Aberdeen in the past. Griffiths will be eager to show that he should be number one striker whilst Odsonne Edouard is out.
Predicted XI: Vasilis Barkas, Jeremie Frimpong, Shane Duffy, Kristoffer Ajer, Diego Laxalt, Scott Brown, Callum McGregor, Ryan Christie, Tom Rogic, Mo Elyounoussi, Leigh Griffiths.