Kris Commons reckons Ange Postecoglou will order his Celtic side to take an even more hell for leather approach when they meet Rangers again on Sunday.
The Premiership’s top two are set to collide in a mammoth Scottish Cup last four showdown at Hampden just days after the Ibrox side take on Braga in the Europa League.
Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s side can book a place in the semi-finals if they overcome a 1-0 deficit against the Portuguese outfit from the first leg.
But Commons believes Postecoglou will keep a close eye on Rangers’ exertions in a tie that could go all the way to extra-time and penalties.
And he insists the Celtic boss, whose team battered St Johnstone 7-0 at the weekend, could up the attacking ante even further if he suspects their rivals will arrive at the national stadium feeling leggy.
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Commons wrote in the Daily Mail: “Celtic’s ruthless performance in beating St Johnstone 7-0 on Saturday was pretty ominous for Rangers.
“Ange Postecoglou isn’t looking for his side to tiptoe over the line in this title race.
“He is wanting to send out a real, clear message to the rest of the league that Celtic are on top form right now and peaking at exactly the right time of the season.
“You can only imagine they are going to get even better with more time on the training ground and building better relationships on and off the park.
“It’s pretty remarkable where they are right now. The future looks really bright.
“Some have even suggested that Celtic looked like they did at their peak under Brendan Rodgers. That’s a compliment to Postecoglou as much as it is to Rodgers.
“Brendan’s time at Celtic was incredible but he probably had a little bit more money at his disposal than the Australian. That just shows you how good a job he’s doing.
“But nothing’s won yet. There’s still a job to be done and his main objective will be to keep these high standards going right until the end of the season.
“Celtic are going for the Treble but they’re also going for a treble of wins over Rangers at Celtic Park, Ibrox and Hampden.
“And they’ll be keeping half an eye on Rangers to see how much energy they expend against Braga in the Europa League on Thursday night.
“If Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s men have a tough evening, Postecoglou might change his plans and really go for the jugular even more than normal. If Rangers play extra time, he may look at injecting extra pace in wide areas.
“Ange has never been one for defending. He won’t be looking to creep over the line in the Scottish Cup either. He’ll be looking to blow Rangers away. Looking to win emphatically with entertaining, attacking football in the Celtic tradition.
“And if Celtic can maintain their recent form, they should do that.”
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.