Celtic v Rangers: Aiden McGeady & Stuart McCall on key questions

Callum McGregor will likely play his 38th derby and, for McCall, stopping the Celtic captain will be crucial to Rangers’ chances of upsetting the odds.

“The middle of the park, for me, is always the key area,” he added.

“I think that in Mohammed Diomande, John Lundstram and whoever goes in there beside them are going to have to win that battle.

“If they can stop McGregor playing and win that middle of the park it’ll give them an opportunity.”

McGeady agrees that midfield is the key battleground.

“If Rangers allow McGregor to dictate the tempo the way he has done in previous fixtures I think it’ll be a very, very tough game for them,” he said.

“I think James Tavernier has such an attacking threat but I always think Daizen Maeda causes problems playing against him.

“But the key area is the middle of the park. McGregor and Reo Hatate coming back in there with Matt O’Riley has coincided with a return to top form.”

And McGeady expects fellow winger James Forrest to reclaim his starting place after “outstanding” recent performances.

“Forrest, four or five weeks ago, wasn’t in the team and now you’re saying he’s probably a shoo-in to start,” he added.

“When you look at their attacking threats, he’s been there for so long but he’s still one of the best that they’ve got.

“But I’ll be very surprised if come full-time on Saturday, we’re not talking about Kyogo [Furuhashi]. He has been a massive thorn in the Rangers side.”

McCall admits Celtic are stronger in most areas at the moment as they look to avoid a first derby home defeat since October 2020.

“Celtic’s front three carry more of a threat than Rangers’ front three,” he said.

“The defence, with Cameron Carter-Vickers back in there, looks a little bit stronger so I think, all round they’re probably stronger.

“Rangers are going to have to defend really well, James Tavernier’s going to have to step up to the plate.”

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