Falkirk have to get back on the winning trail after an unexpected defeat to Gretna last week. With Celtic today's opponents, defender Tam Scobbie and his colleagues could be in for a busy time if they want to play their part. Scobbie knows that wingers Aiden McGeady and Shunsuke Nakamura are the ones to watch but the Bairns youngster admits quality runs right through the reigning SPL champions. Falkirk have found been on the end of some high scoring defeats against Celtic this season, losing 4-1 and 4-0, despite playing some of their flowing passing, attacking style. However, Scobbie is hopeful John Hughes' side can nullify Celtic's match-winners and come away with at least a draw. He said: "The likes of McGeady and Nakamura are players that we have to watch and keep a close eye on but they have talent all through the squad. Scott Brown gives them energy and enthusiasm and there's big Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink up front. They've got top-quality players and they pay the right money for them. These are the players that are expected to win games for them. We're there to try to make sure we can keep them under wraps and then hopefully, if luck goes our way, pick up a point or even a win."
In last month's 4-0 defeat, McGeady netted a magnificent hat-trick, while Nakamura has also tormented Falkirk with his displays in the past. Left-back Scobbie admits he could have his work cut out if he is handed the task of trying to nullify playmaker Nakamura. He added: "Playing against Nakamura was one of my first challenges in the first team and it was a great challenge for me to come up against such a good player. His all-round game is superb. He's got a great touch and he's got that bit of class where he always knows what he's going to do with the ball before he gets it. His movement off the ball is excellent, he takes you into places where you don't really want to go as a defender. His all-round play is brilliant, he has that extra bit of quality where he can produce a bit of magic and turn a game in that one moment, whether it's a free-kick, a corner, a cross, a step-over or a shot. It's important for us that we make sure we are right on our game and get to grips with him."
Celtic manager Gordon Strachan claims Falkirk were particularly unlucky to lose by four goals the last time the two sides met at Parkhead. Strachan is expecting a tricky afternoon at the Falkirk Stadium and knows the home side will not require any invitation to attack his back-line. But he expects his own players to pour forward and put pressure on the Falkirk goal too. Harking back to the win in Glasgow last month, Strachan said: "You can be unfortunate sometimes as a team. We scored four goals with 16 attempts at goal when we beat them 4-0 at home recently. Last week against Kilmarnock we had 23 attempts at goal and only scored with an own-goal, so you can be lucky or unlucky. So I think Falkirk were a wee bit unlucky that day. We are happy with the football we are playing at the moment. In our last four games we have been averaging over 20 attempts at goal per game which is very, very good. It is all to do with finishing. Our defensive record is not that bad either. We would like it to be better and we obviously had that bad run away from home when we couldn't keep a clean sheet. But throughout that we were scoring goals to win games."
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