Celtic can bounce bounce back from defeat in Hearts visit
Lee Gormley | December 23, 2015
Hearts v Celtic
- Scottish Premiership
- Sunday, December 27th
- Kick-off: 14:00 GMT
- Tynecastle Stadium, Edinburgh
Bhoys battling to bounce back at Hearts
Ronny Deila’s Scottish Premiership champions Celtic will look to bounce back from a surprising defeat to Motherwell in their last domestic outing when they travel to face Hearts, a side they have not lost to since April 2012, stretching back 12 meetings.
After such an underwhelming loss last time out, the Hoops have now had their lead over second-placed rivals Aberdeen narrowed to just a single point, though they still hold a game in hand over their closest challengers.
The Bhoys overcame Hearts comfortably last season in both home and away clashes, earning 3-0 and 4-0 victories, and Deila’s side are 9/2 with Coral to win by three or more goals once again on their travels, with a £20 max stake.
Skipper Brown backs under-pressure Deila
With the search for a fifth consecutive Scottish league crown hitting several blips this term, as well as having haplessly exited from European competition recently, Bhoys boss Deila has come under immense pressure, with many fans even calling for his dismissal.
Although, the Norwegian coach has remained defiant and is still on course for a silverware treble this season, with club captain, who is currently sidelined with an injury, backing his manager as the man to guide Celtic to further success long-term.
“It’s very harsh,” stated Brown regarding the fans’ petition raised against Deila. “We are top of the league, we are a point clear of Aberdeen who are having a good season. We are still in both domestic cups.
“He will get the best out of the bunch of lads…”
“Yeah, we were disappointed with Europe but there is nothing we can do about that now. We just have to concentrate on the three tournaments that we are in.
“You use your squad, you use your players and the manager will do that wisely. He will get the best out of the bunch of lads that is there just now.
“Do I understand the frustration of the fans? You are never everyone’s cup of tea. I’m not. At the end of the day, we just have to win games and that’s what we will try to do.”
Hearts hold threat to Hoops
Robbie Neilson’s hosts pose a genuine threat to the travelling Bhoys and are 17/4 to inflict further misery on the champions with another home triumph.
Hearts may have dropped well off the pace for the title in third position, but they possess enough quality to give Deila concern, with in-form Swedish striker Osman Sow 9/4 to tuck away his seventh league goal anytime. In the absence of aggressive Spaniard Juanma, who is serving a suspension, former Crystal Palace misfit Sow can be relied upon instead.
Although, Celtic hold brilliant firepower, with Leigh Griffiths 10/3 to open proceedings after recently signing a new long-term contract with the Glasgow giants, while former West Ham United frontman Carlton Cole is evens to strike anytime.
The home outfit will look to stifle Celtic further in their latest match-up, while the Bhoys are battling to maintain a slender lead over Aberdeen during this intriguing Scottish Premiership season.
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