Olivier Ntcham could be the difference during Celtic’s Old Firm clash with Scottish Premiership rivals Rangers – for better or for worse.

On his day, Olivier Ntcham is the most naturally gifted footballer in Scottish football. He can pass like a seasoned playmaker, control the tempo of the game from the centre of the park and, on occasion, locate the top corner with a laser-guided missile of a shot.

But there’s nothing more frustrating than seeing a player with all the ability in the world stroll through a game, barely showing even the briefest flicker of interest the battle going on around him. Just ask Arsenal fans.

And If Ntcham wants to retain his place in the starting XI when Rangers make the trip across Glasgow on Sunday, it’s fair to say he didn’t exactly ace his audition during Celtic’s hard-fought 2-1 win away at St Mirren on Boxing Day.

The £4 million Frenchman failed to influence the game against limited opposition and gave the ball away on numerous occasions. It is that kind of lapse in concentration that a high-pressing Rangers side will be looking to pray on during a game which swing the title in their direction.

Ntcham at his string-pulling peak is capable of dominating Rangers from the centre of the park. On current form, however, he could be an accident waiting to happen.

 

In other news, 22-year-old linked to Newcastle is 'very likely' to be leaving current club