Hibs will be looking to make amends for the defeat in last season’s final at the hands of city rivals Hearts, while Celtic are keen to complete the league and cup double after a gruelling season that saw them make the last 16 of the Champions League.
Some of Neil Lennon’s squad have played 40 games, whilst goalkeeper Fraser Forster and striker Gary Hooper have racked up 50 appearances each.
Indeed, defender Mikael Lustig is concerned that fatigue may hamper Celtic whilst Hibernian boss Pat Fenlon has learned from last year’s mistake of taking his squad to Ireland, away from the hype surrounding the first Edinburgh derby cup final in over 100 years.
DATE: Sunday May 26th 2013
VENUE: Hampden Park
TV CHANNEL: BBC1
The much-publicised fitness battle currently being fought by Hibs defenders James McPake and Tim Clancy have hit the headlines recently, with McPake taking a pain-killing injection to give him the best possible chance of playing in Sunday’s match, but the match could come too soon for Clancy.
Scott Brown has recently returned from a three-month injury layoff, but Neil Lennon is confident his captain is ready for the final. Charlie Mulgrew and Adam Matthews missed the 4-0 win against Dundee United at Tannadice with knee injuries, but should return for Sunday’s match.
Hibernian and Celtic have met in five previous cup finals, but have played six games - the 1914 Scottish Cup Final finished in a 0-0 draw, with Celtic winning the replay 4-1. Hibs have triumphed just once, in 1902, beating the Parkhead side 1-0. Celtic recorded a 1-0 victory in 1923, a 6-1 mauling in 1972 and in the most recent Scottish Cup Final meeting, a 3-0 win.
15/2 Hibernian win
2/5 Celtic win
Celtic are without influential midfielder Victor Wanyama after the Kenyan international picked up a yellow card in the semi-final win against Dundee United, banning him for the Cup Final, but captain Scott Brown made a return to first team action after a three-month injury layoff. Neil Lennon will be looking for the former Hibs midfielder to pull the strings in the middle of the park, as Celtic will be without the suspended Beram Kayal.
Hibernian will, naturally, be looking to 28-goal striker Leigh Griffiths as their main threat up front, but will need a team effort if they are to end their 111-year hoodoo. Jordon Forster could be thrown in at the deep end should captain James McPake not make it, but the young defender performed well against Hearts in the recent derby at Tynecastle, and marshalled the Dundee strikeforce in the final game of the season at Easter Road.