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Celtic make a visit to Ibrox on Saturday to take on Rangers for the clubs' sixth and final battle this season.

For many Hoops players, experiencing the Glasgow Derby and all that surrounds it can be the making of their careers at the club. A solid defensive display, a masterclass in the middle of the park or a winning goal can in turn catapult a player from the back of supporters’ minds to the front of their attention in the space of 90 minutes.

It must be acknowledged that – on paper at least – there is little to play for in this contest between the two sides. The Scottish Premiership trophy is staying firmly at Parkhead for another year, following a 2-0 win over Hearts at Tynecastle last Sunday. However, there is no such thing as a ‘dead rubber’ when it comes to a Glasgow Derby, despite the comparatively low stakes attached to this game.

For Celtic, Saturday’s clash is the first match in the fixture list since retaining their title. If they avoid defeat in this encounter, they will go a full domestic season unbeaten against Rangers, a record well worth going all-out for.

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For their opponents, Michael Beale and his team need to stop the rot this season, only managing a 2-2 draw the last time the two senior teams played at the ground in February. All the pressure is on the Englishman to finally win a game against Ange Postecoglou’s all-conquering side this season.

This is why Postecoglou and Celtic should shuffle the pack this Saturday and give players who need to sample the Glasgow Derby experience a start in this occasion.

Here are four who fit the bill.

Alexandro Bernabei

Perhaps an unlikely scenario to occur given Greg Taylor’s consistency in the left-back role this season, Bernabei could do with the experience against Rangers. The Argentina full-back, signed last summer from Club Atletico Lanus in his homeland, has only managed 17 appearances in all competitions so far.

It has been a stop-start season for the 22-year-old. The player has only managed four minutes against Rangers in total this campaign, after coming on as a left-winger in the recent 3-2 victory at Celtic Park, whilst his appearances playing further back have been few and far between when Taylor is available.

His chance perhaps should have come in the 2-2 draw in January when Taylor went down injured in the first half. Instead, Postecoglou opted to go for Josip Juranovic, who proceeded to have a nightmare playing out of position at left-back, shortly before his move to Union Berlin.

Celtic paid a reported £3.75m to secure Bernabei's services, a large outlay for a player to sit on the bench for the majority of his time at the club so far. These are the games in which Bernabei needs to be accustomed to if he is to make the grade. A good performance in the lion's den could be the kick-start he needs to ignite his Celtic career.

Tomoki Iwata

One player who has had good experiences against Rangers already – albeit from the bench – is Japan international midfielder Tomoki Iwata. The versatile January signing, who can play in the middle of both midfield and defence, impressed in his cameo appearances against the Ibrox side.

Because of this, Postecoglou should play his former Yokohama F Marinos player from the start in Saturday’s derby match. The reigning J.League Player of the Year is well-equipped to handle both the occasion and the surroundings that will await him if given the nod by his manager.

A notable example of this came in the 3-2 derby win at Celtic Park. Iwata was substituted into the game in the 61st minute, bringing with him a calming presence in the middle of the park, where the game was frantic beforehand. An athletic player with a keen eye for a pass, Iwata’s grit and determination helped his side win the game which was firmly in the balance before his arrival.

Sead Haksabanovic

Further up the pitch, Saturday could be a perfect opportunity to unleash Sead Haksabanovic, either centrally in the no.10 role or on the left wing. Signed from Rubin Kazan in the summer, the player possesses a lot of strong individual qualities that can hurt the opposition's defence.

The Montenegro international, who has 32 caps for his country, has impressed in flashes, mostly from substitute appearances against tired legs. If given the chance, the attacker has to make the most of the manager’s vote of confidence and perform well from the get-go.

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Injuries have curtailed the talented player from fully realising the early promise shown in his first few months in Glasgow, but the ability is certainly there. If Haksabanovic is selected on Saturday for the derby, do not be surprised if he is the man to make all the difference.

Hyeon-gyu Oh

With Kyogo Furuhashi an injury doubt for Saturday’s game, Hyeon-gyu Oh will be hoping that Postecoglou grants him a start in this derby for the first time.

The South Korea striker scored the vital second goal against Hearts last time out, and the 22-year-old has impressed since his move from Suwon Samsung Bluewings, scoring four goals thus far.

Not afraid to throw his weight about for the team, Oh may have forced his way into Postecoglou’s plans with that late goal at Tynecastle. It would be a great game to showcase to the Celtic faithful that he is ready to compete with Kyogo for the lone striker position at the Glasgow club.

This piece is an extract from the latest Celtic Digest newsletter, which is emailed out every weekday evening with a round-up of the day's top stories and exclusive analysis from The Celtic Way team.

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