Walking out at Hampden for tonight’s Scottish Youth Cup final won’t be an alien experience for Hibs’ Jamie Gullan, but the feeling he’ll have when doing won’t be diminished in any way.
The young striker has spent the second half of the season on loan at League One Queen’s Park, so he is used to playing at the National Stadium.
Familiarity certainly hasn’t bred contempt however, and Gullan still gets a rush from the historic old ground. “It’s an honour every time you run out at Hampden,” said the 18-year-old. “I’ve been lucky enough to do it four or five times this season and I won’t be phased by playing on the pitch, so I just can’t wait to get out there.
“The feeling when you run out doesn’t go away. Each time I’ve done it it’s been that same feeling of just being delighted to do it.”
Gullan has two games left at the same stadium, and both are massive for different reasons. Hibs are on the cusp of a league and cup double, while The Spiders must beat Arbroath on Saturday to have any chance of avoiding relegation to the bottom tier of Scottish football.
Tonight’s occasion may have a touch more glamour about it, but for Gullan, Saturday’s experience will be no less meaningful.
“It’s two massive games,” he said. “Ideally you want to win both but I’ll just take each one as it comes and hopefully get through them both having won. It would be great to get the double before going in to Saturday’s game.
“The loan spell’s been good. It’s a good group of lads and training is a high standard. I’ve not played as much as I would have wanted to due to a few niggling injuries but I’ve learnt a lot.
“It’s different to Hibs in that it’s completely about the result at Queen’s Park. They’re not really bothered how you play. We’ve got one game left so hopefully we can win that and then at least we can stay up via the play-offs.”