This weekend’s Old Firm derby, for the second time in the space of a few months, will have nothing riding on it for Celtic.
The Hoops can end their biggest rivals’ unbeaten run in the Premiership, but apart from that, they only have pride at stake.
After the diabolical showing in the Scottish Cup fourth round a couple of weeks ago, the Bhoys will need to show something vastly different. They were abject defensively and spurned some excellent chances to score – Odsonne Edouard snatched at a chance in the second half and then missed a penalty as well.
The Frenchman has come under fire in recent weeks and it looks as though his heart simply isn’t at Parkhead anymore.
It’s a huge shame because Edouard has been a force in Scotland for a number of years now. He hasn’t enjoyed the best of campaigns but he still has 20 goals to his name in all competitions throughout 2020/21.
However, if Celtic want to ensure that he ends his time at Paradise with a bang, they must give him some extra assistance.
Having James Forrest back from injury in the Old Firm on Sunday should be a massive help to Edouard’s game. The Scotland international has been missing for a few weeks now with injury but has proven on his day what an exceptional player he is for Celtic.
Last term, the winger racked up 16 goals and 22 assists, numbers which have been a huge miss during his lengthy time on the sidelines throughout 2020/21.
However, another player who could get from Edouard is a certain Karamoko Dembele.
The teenager has still only made six senior appearances since being inducted into the first team fold at the age of 17, but he was given a rare opportunity to impress in the final ten minutes against Aberdeen last time out.
Dembele’s contract was initially thought to expire in the summer but Transfermarkt surprisingly claims that it won’t end until 2022. Either way, the 18-year-old could provide John Kennedy’s team with a new lease of life which is badly needed in the side.
With that in mind, bringing Dembele into the team could be game-changing at this moment in time. The winger still has a lot to prove but he’s an exciting talent who can beat his man with pace and trickery in abundance.
When he first burst onto the scene, he was given fine appraisal from one of the greatest Dutch football to bless the game in Ruud Gullit, who said that Dembele looks “pretty special” and suggested that the prodigy “is exceptionally good.”
With the young English talent on one wing and Forrest on the other, it could give Celtic a fresher and more exciting look than they’ve had at other points in this arduous season.
For Edouard, this should also be particularly fruitful.