Celtic have won the previous two Glasgow Derbies, 3-0 at Parkhead back in February and then 2-1 at Ibrox earlier this month. And one could argue that they were the much better team when the two sides met back in August of last year. Thus, going into the fourth Glasgow Derby of the season, the Scottish Cup semi-final at Hampden Park, one has to give the edge to Ange Postecoglou’s side.
But at the same time, the Rangers have also shown that they can rise up to the plate on their day. They won a tie against Borussia Dortmund earlier in the season and came from behind in the second leg of the quarter-finals against SC Braga to book their place in the Europa League semi-finals. Thus, Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s team have been handed a confidence booster.
On top of that, Celtic are set to be without Giorgos Giakoumakis on the day, after the Greek striker suffered an injury last weekend against St Johnstone.
Initially, it had been believed that Kyogo was not fit enough to be starting against the Rangers either, having returned to the pitch after more than three months out of action just last weekend. But Postecoglou has given a very interesting fitness update on the Japanese star.
Postecoglou’s Kyogo fitness update will excite Celtic fans
As reported by BBC, Postecoglou said when asked regarding Kyogo’s fitness levels at the moment:
“I don’t think he is ready to play 90 or 120, but he’s ready to play. He was back in and got some match minutes last weekend and he has had two solid weeks of training with the group.
“We train pretty hard and he has matched those levels, so that means he is ready to play.”
So, while Kyogo might not be ready to play the 90 minutes or 120 minutes, if it goes to extra-time, could he potentially start the game and play for around an hour or so? It will be very interesting to see if that is the case.
It is important though to make sure that Kyogo is not rushed back, like he was the last time around. It only resulted in him picking up a more serious injury, which kept him out of action for more than three months. Celtic cannot afford a repeat of that at this stage of the season.
This article was originally posted here