VETERAN referee Craig Thomson will be in charge of Celtic’s Premiership encounter with Hibs at Parkhead this evening.

The Hoops will be hoping for better fortune than when the FIFA-listed match official was the man in the middle during the game against Kilmarnock at Rugby Park earlier in the season.

Leigh Griffiths gave the visitors the first-half lead and it looked as though the champions were coasting until a long shot from Chris Burke deceived Craig Gordon and bounced into the net off the right-hand post.

It looked as though the meeting would end in a 1-1 stalemate before, deep into stoppage time, Thomson awarded Killie a corner-kick as the Celtic keeper believed it was a goal-kick to the Parkhead men. The whistler stood firm and gave the kick to Steve Clarke’s side.

HEADS WE LOSE…Stuart Findlay nods in Killie’s winner against the Hoops in September. Pic: Geo.

Burke swung in the right-wing effort and Stuart Findlay, a former Celts prospect, rose unchallenged to head the ball wide of Gordon for the winning goal.

There were exactly TWO seconds to go. Brendan Rodgers’ men kicked off and Thomson blew for full-time.

Let’s hope there is no action replay this evening in the east end of Glasgow as the champions search for their 13th successive Premiership win at home to maintain an impeccable record in this campaign. A victory over the managerless Edinburgh outfit will place the seven-in-a-row title kings on 57 points while something will have to give at Pittodrie where nearest challengers Aberdeen and Rangers clash at the same time.

At Parkhead this evening, Thomson will be flanked by assistants Drew Kirkland and Gary Hilland with Grant Irvine as the fourth official.

* DON’T miss the unbeatable match report from Celtic v Hibs tonight – only in your champion CQN.

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