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19 September 2020 16:41

Real Madrid C.F. Zinedine Zidane Eden Hazard

Celtic 3 Livingston 2 RECAP as Albian Ajeti sends champions top of the Premiership despite late scare

Celtic survived a late scare against Livingston to go top of the Premiership for the first time this season. That seemed to stir Celtic into action, and Callum McGregor fired in a fantastic long-range strike to put the champions back on terms. A lovely team move saw Albian Ajeti coolly convert for a third, and it appeared that would be the end of the match as a contest. Shane Duffy will be looking to maintain his 100% scoring record as a Celtic player when the Hoops face Livingston this weekend. The Republic of Ireland defender has enjoyed a great start to his Celtic career, scoring in each of his two games so far.

Neil Lennon's men face a Livingston side who took points off Rangers already this season, but the ten-in-a-row seekers will be expected to win on home soil. The game takes place at Celtic Park on Saturday, September 19. Celtic will stream the match live on their Pass To Paradise platform to season ticket holders. Celtic manager Neil Lennon speaking after Wednesday's win over St Mirren: "It's a game we're very much looking forward to. "But we know Livingston have caused us problems in the past, so we'll have a couple of day's recovery and we'll focus on the game at the weekend." Celtic win: 1/12 Celtic take on Livingston today in what won't be an easy encounter at Celtic Park.

In the last six SPFL games, Celtic have only one twice against Livi, drawing three and losing one. Celtic have started looking more dominant in the air at set-pieces, that's down to Duffy's inclusion over recent games but when things aren't going our way in open play, we can pop up with a well-drilled set piece. Neil Lennon is likely to make some changes to the St Mirren game. Celtic will look to return to the summit of the Scottish Premiership this weekend when they take on Livingston at home on Saturday. Despite beating both Ross County (0-5) and St Mirren (1-2) away in their rescheduled double-header, the results were not as straight forward as Celtic manager Neil Lennon would have intended.

Both of these matches have highlighted Celtic's defensive frailties as Neil Lennon struggles to find his favoured starting eleven. Nevertheless, the firepower at the other end of the pitch has seen Lennon's Celtic side win their last 4 consecutive matches as they look to catch their Old Firm rivals at the top of the table. When Celtic welcomes Livingston to Celtic Park on Saturday they will look to continue their fine form and keep their defensive mishaps to a minimum. After resting both Jeremie Frimpong and Mohamed Elyounoussi midweek, it is anticipated that Neil Lennon will ring in the changes for the match on Saturday. Livingston will be looking for a positive result following their late defeat to Brian Rice's Hamilton Accies side last Saturday.

Livingston have never won at Celtic Park, with their last outing at Parkhead resulting in a 4-0 defeat. As Livingston will be without striker Lydon Dykes following his record transfer move to Queens Park Rangers who caused Celtic's defence so much trouble in the past, it is unlikely to see Livingston taking any points from this match. As Livingston will look to set up with five in midfield with Marvin Bartley sitting in front of the back 4, Celtic's wide men will need to be on their game to break down a turgid Livingston side. As Callum McGregor will look to continue his fine vein of form and the importance of Celtic's wide men to break down a compact Livingston side, McGregor looks a good bet to be to score a goal. Livingston have failed to win away from home in their last 7 outings, whereas Celtic have scored at least 2 goals in 25 of their last 28 premiership matches.

Celtic look comfortable for a 3-1 win come the final whistle at Celtic Park on Saturday. Starting Team – Kick-off at Celtic Park is 3pm. CELTIC: Barkas, Taylor, Duffy, Brown, Ajeti, Christie, Ntcham, Frimpong, Ajer, McGregor, Elhamed. Celtic take on Livingston on Saturday and, thankfully for Christopher Jullien, they will do so without Lyndon Dykes in their ranks, playing on grass also seems to blunt the West Lothian side's limited style of play which is a strange phenomenon in the year 2020. Gary Holt's side currently sit 11th in the Scottish Premiership with just one win from their seven league fixtures so far and two draws, one of those being a 0-0 result at home against those from across the city. Having tinkered in mid-week to secure an uninspiring 2-1 win against St Mirren it would be a surprise to see Neil Lennon go with anything other than his strongest XI and a return for Jullien and Albian Ajeti, personally I'd rather see David Turnbull come into the team to give Scott Brown a rest but I don't think it will happen. Celtic v Livi - score prediction In terms of predictions, without Dykes, Livi are a shadow of their former selves and a comfortable afternoon should be enjoyed by those of a green and white persuasion, 3-0 to the Hoops and Shane Duffy to score anytime looking like a decent shout.