In a boost for Rangers, Celtic could be without two important players for the Old Firm, should it be played as scheduled on 2nd January.
Ange Postecogclou confirmed on Tuesday that influential winger Jota is set to miss the clash and there are also doubts about the availability of midfielder David Turnbull.
Jota picked up a hamstring injury in a clash against Hearts at the beginning of the month and hasn’t featured for the Hoops since then.
He’s already missed five matches and is set to miss their next four.
“Jota’s injury was quite significant so we don’t think we’ll see him back before the break,” said Postecoglou [Scottish Sun].
Meanwhile, Turnbull was forced off just 27 minutes into Celtic’s League Cup final win over Hibernian on Sunday, also due to a hamstring problem.
Postecogclou says the severity of the injury hasn’t been established yet, but it’s rare that players return from any kind of hamstring issue in a fortnight.
“Dave was the major one coming out of the final,” he said. “We have had the scan but we haven’t had the results yet.”
“He’ll definitely be out for St Mirren, but I’m not sure how long he’ll miss.”
Rangers could benefit amid Celtic injury woes
Turnbull and Jota have mustered 17 goals and 13 assists between them so far this season, with both players starting every Premiership fixture they’ve been available for to date.
There’s no doubt that the Hoops are weaker without them in the side, so it’s a boost for Rangers if they can’t feature.
As is the fact that there’s only set to be 500 fans inside Celtic Park.
Celtic have formally requested that the winter break be brought forward but even though Rangers have injury problems of their own, it’s in the Gers’ interest for the match to go ahead.
Meanwhile, in a transfer twist, a Rangers loanee is reportedly in advanced negotiations to seal a switch to a new club.