Celtic star knows Hibs’ John McGinn is main threat at Hampden

John McGinn scored twice when Hibs drew 2-2 with Celtic last month
John McGinn scored twice when Hibs drew 2-2 with Celtic last month
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Callum McGregor has pinpointed John McGinn as the man to watch after the Hibs midfielder came close to wrecking Celtic’s unbeaten domestic run which now stretches to an astonishing 
59 matches.

McGinn scored twice at Celtic Park only three weeks ago only for McGregor to claim his own second of the game just as he was beginning to think the Hoops’ record had gone.

He said: “It’s a great unbeaten record and we want to see how far we can go. There have been a few tight games in there and you think maybe this is the day we lose it, but the strength and mentality of the boys comes through. We don’t know when we’re beaten and we’ve scored late goals to which boosts confidence to boost the run.

“You look at the game we played against Hibs recently when they went 2-1 up with 13 minutes to go and pretty much everyone looked at each other in the stadium and thought this could be the one. But we got back in the game and scored and might even have had a penalty as well.”

Now McGregor is anticipating a repeat of that thriller when the sides clash again at Hampden tomorrow in the semi-final of the Betfred Cup.

He said: “We know how good they are. You only need to look at the great game they gave us at Celtic Park.

“I’m sure it will be the same on Saturday. Both teams are at the top of the game, so it should be exciting.

“John’s a top player. He got a couple of goals at Celtic Park, which will be great for him. We know he’s a big player for them. He has been for a couple of seasons, and he’s certainly one we’ll need to watch.”

McGregor admitted Brendan Rodgers’ players may have to dig deep again, tomorrow’s lunch-time kick-off giving them little time to recover from their midweek exertions as they suffered a Champions League crushing at the hands of Bayern Munich in Germany.

Rodgers has already claimed the semi-final should have been switched to Sunday to accommodate Celtic’s European schedule but McGregor believes that is the price they have to pay for the success they are enjoying.

He said: “I think it would have been nice if we could have played the Sunday, had that extra day.

“But it’s just the nature of being in European competition – games come thick and fast. We just need to recover and be ready.”