Chris Sutton defends under-fire Celtic star amid 'pressure' Rangers claim

All the latest news surrounding Celtic and Rangers as they continue their Premiership title battle.
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The race for the Premiership title looks set to be a fascinating one, with the race looking likely to go to the wire. Rangers currently lead by two points, but they face an interesting test this weekend.

Philippe Clement's men will have to bounce back from Europa League heartbreak to defeat Dundee away from home. Meanwhile, Celtic will look to keep up pace at home against St Johnstone. In the meantime, we have rounded up all the latest news surrounding both sides.

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Sutton defence

Former Celtic man Chris Sutton has defended Hoops midfielder Matt O'Riley amid a dip in form of late. He told the Daily Record: "You have to take into account it’s not just O’Riley that’s seen a dip – the entire Celtic team hasn’t clicked often enough since the turn of the year. Or more of the season, in fact. O’Riley hasn’t been helped by the inconsistency of selection either. Celtic can’t make excuses for injuries when they have a cast of thousands in their squad.

"I still believe O’Riley has been one of Celtic’s top performers this season. And I don’t think for a second his form is related to the January transfer talk. If anything, that stuff should inspire him. When you look at his performances in the Champions League, in the home games against Atletico and Lazio in particular, you’d expect more interest in him in the summer.

"If a big money offer comes in then I don’t think fans would grudge him a big move. A lot could depend on his performances from now until the end of term though."

Butland verdict

Rangers star Jack Butland has also received some back-up, with former Rangers man Barry Ferguson telling the Daily Record of his England omission: "I was watching the announcement and I couldn’t believe it – and I’m not just saying this because he’s the Rangers goalkeeper. I honestly don’t know what to say. The keepers that were picked in front of him, yes, they’re good keepers. But are they better than Jack Butland? I don’t think so.

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“It cracks me up. It’s a slap in the face for Scottish football. Why hasn’t he made that squad – because he’s playing up here? I keep saying to people, Jack Butland might not have to make 10, 12 or 15 saves during a game and certainly not when Rangers are playing at Ibrox. But if he’s only having to make one or two saves during 90 minutes it means his concentration levels are sky high. That tells me the guy is focussed and tuned right in.

“So when I saw that squad I thought, ‘Typical!’. It just shows the disregard they have for our game. What they don’t realise is the pressure he’s playing under in every single game. As a Rangers keeper you’re expected to win every game and produce the goods up here. He’s under more pressure than any of the other keepers in that squad.”

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