Events in the final international break of the season went in our favour. Callum McGregor, Greg Taylor and Josip Juranovic were all rested. Reo Hatate played his first 45 minutes football in a stress-free match against Vietnam, while Matt O’Riley had 20 minutes action for Denmark U21s. Celtic players will return from international duty injury-free and sufficiently rested ahead of Sunday.
By comparison, Newco’s three Nigerian internationals were involved in an exhausting home draw with Ghana which was not enough to see them eliminated from the World Cup. You and I know that these things can be overcome, but we also know Newco like an excuse to fail. Now they have one readymade.
Whether they play Alfredo Morelos, who is carrying an injury, or leave him out, the Columbian’s condition gives them an additional excuse to fail. This comes a week after they accused a group of fans of undermining their domestic and European challenges. Give a team an excuse to fail and they will take it. Maybe Newco know what to expect on Sunday.