It would be easy for Celtic to take their eye of the ball. A huge Scottish Cup game at Tannadice last week, which was more difficult than the score-line suggests, before Neil Lennon had what will have been a few traumatic days. The tension in the west of Scotland ahead of next weekend’s game at Ibrox is already tangible; in truth, we could do with some quiet preparation time ahead of tomorrow’s Scottish Communities League Cup Final against Kilmarnock.
Kilmarnock have no such worries. The Cup Final tomorrow is their season. Out of the Scottish Cup and certain to finish in the bottom six of the SPL, their focus will be absolute tomorrow. Kenny Shiels’ team have won only four league games since October but you will not need me to tell you two of those victories were against Rangers.
Two home wins within six days against Rangers and Aberdeen, the latter on 3 December, suggested Killie were certain to challenge for a European place this season, but things have moved south since then. They beat St Mirren on 2 January at Rugby Park before that impressive performance dumped Rangers on their bums at Ibrox last month.
Kenny Shiels made it onto Radio Scotland during the week to tell the nation that Celtic were so good it would be a travesty if they didn’t win the treble. I totally agree (and I’m warming to this guy) but Kenny knows exactly what he is doing. He intends to win the cup tomorrow and will know every potential weakness in the Celtic team.
History suggests he has a decent chance. Since winning five consecutive finals (until 1969), Celtic competed in 20 finals, winning only seven. We have some form to make up in this tournament.
Issue 7 of CQN Magazien is out now! Go to the dedicated magazine site here to read it properly (which you’ll not be able to do below).
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