Celtic vs Rangers | Scottish Cup Final Match Preview
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Celtic vs Rangers | Scottish Cup Final Match Preview

24/05/24 17:42

Former England and Manchester City Number one Joe Hart will hang up his gloves on Saturday with everything on the line, as Celtic play Rangers in the 441st edition of the Old Firm Derby in the Scottish Cup final.

Hart, who has played 152 games for Celtic, as well as stints at Birmingham City, Manchester City, Burnley and West Ham, thanked the supporters for a ‘phenomenal send-off’ after making his final appearance at Parkhead against St. Mirren, with the Scottish premiership already secured.

Joe Hart

After a moving ovation from the Celtic fans, Hart gave his reasons for hanging up his gloves, saying: “I want to finish strong, in a special place, in a special club … I felt like this was the right moment.”

The two sides have not faced each other in the final stage of the Scottish Cup since 2002, where Rangers’ Peter Lovenkrands bagged a brace as Rangers prevailed 3-2 in a classic.

This high-stakes clash comes a month and a half after another epic edition of the Old Firm, a fiery 3-3 draw at the Ibrox, which was considered one of the best iterations of the rivalry in years by fans and pundits, featuring own goal, red cards, a comeback and some late drama.

However, Rangers face an uphill battle, missing key names for the final, with Connor Goldson, Abdallah Sima and Borna Barisic unlikely to play a part due to injury.

Celtic face a much easier team selection, andcan boast an almost fully fit squad, with captain Callum McGregor, Cameron Carter-Vickers and Reo Hatate all recently returning from injury lay-offs.

As the old saying goes, in cup football, anything can happen. But Rangers have not won any of the 4 games they’ve played this season against Celtic, and despite so much being on the line, I can only predict a win for the Bhoys. A 3-1 scoreline seems the least we can expect.

Benji Kosartiyer
Journalist
Harry Pascoe

Football Writer

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