Following Wednesday’s Champions League glory night at Celtic Park, many Celtic fans will barely be over their hangovers as they prepare to take on a side against who they have experienced mixed fortunes in recent years.
Last April, Neil Lennon’s men crushed Kilmarnock 6-0 at Rugby Park to clinch their first SPL title for four years, just one month after Kenny Shiels’ side had stunned them 1-0 at Hampden to lift the Scottish Communities League Cup.
It also comes just six months after Lennon came within 45 minutes of losing his job following a dramatic 3-3 draw in the SPL, when Celtic came from 3-0 down at half-time to snatch an unlikely draw, and just six weeks after Kilmarnock won at Celtic Park for the first time in nearly 60 years with a 2-0 triumph in Glasgow’s East End.
So it’s safe to say that, despite Celtic’s success in midweek, nobody will be taking anything for granted come Saturday.
Kilmarnock will look to the fact that Celtic have failed to win their last three matches following their last three Champions League games, going down to Inverness CT, drawing with St Johnstone and losing to Killie themselves.
They will also be cheered by the Hoops’ miserable 1-1 draw with Arbroath in the Scottish Cup last Saturday and the fact that they have won just four of their last 12 matches in all competitions.
Nevertheless, the home side are still a massive 7/1 with bwin to pick up all three points on Saturday – a price that is sure to attract a fair bit of interest.
The visitors are 7/20, while the draw is on offer at 13/4, which is another quote that is sure to have many punters reaching for their wallets.
However, despite the tempting prices against Celtic and their recent stuttering domestic form, I am going to stop short of tipping a Kilmarnock win.
It’s nearly three years since the Ayrshire side beat the Green and Whites on their own patch, so that outcome will always remain an outside punt for the more adventurous among us.
Instead, I am going to suggest backing a draw at half-time and Celtic at full-time, which is available at 333/100.
This will allow for a Champions League hangover on Celtic’s part but also assumes that their tag of overwhelming favourites is justified.
New customers who sign up with bwin online qualify for a free £20 bet and using that to back a draw at half-time and Celtic at full-time will return £86.60 if successful.