Celtic return to action this weekend with a timely break from the Premiership. The Bhoys have had a torrid league campaign and have surrendered their grasp on the title.
They are no longer champions and they currently have no silverware to their name in the 2020/21 season. Thus, the Scottish Cup represents a chance to correct their campaign somewhat.
They take on Falkirk this Saturday with the hope of retaining a tournament they won in 2019/20. After a torrid year, taking on a team in the third tier was exactly what they needed when the draw came out. However, if they lose, it will only heap further embarrassment on the Hoops.
With a game like this, John Kennedy could choose to make a number of changes. Here’s the XI we’re predicting him to pick.
We are tipping Kennedy to make as many as five changes to the side which drew with Rangers last time out.
The first thing to note is a swap between the sticks, where Scott Bain is rested and Vasilis Barkas afforded an opportunity to play. He has been rather error-prone this season but this is a good opportunity for the Greek to rediscover some form and confidence.
Another replacement is on the left-hand side of defence, where Greg Taylor comes in for the £57,000-per-week Diego Laxalt. The left-back has been missing for a few weeks now with an injury but returned to the substitute’s bench last time out.
There are plenty of changes in midfield, where Ismaila Soro comes in for Scott Brown with the skipper rested for cup duty.
James Forrest comes into the team on the left wing, replacing Mo Elyounoussi. The Norwegian scored in the Old Firm derby but is rested here, with Forrest handed a first start since returning from a lengthy injury layoff.
Mikey Johnston has returned to training this week but this match may come too soon in terms of being included among the starting XI.