Callum McGregor insists Celtic’s final game of the season is important

Celtic v St Mirren – Scottish Premiership – Celtic Park
(Image credit: Andrew Milligan)

Callum McGregor insists Celtic and Hibernian will not coast their final Premiership game of the season at Easter Road on Saturday.

Neither team can improve their league position after Hibs clinched third spot in midweek with a win at Aberdeen, with the Hoops already confirmed as runners-up to new champions Rangers.

Jack Ross’ side have next week’s Scottish Cup final against St Johnstone at Hampden Park on their mind while a dismal season for Celtic, where they are still without a new boss after Neil Lennon resigned in February, draws to a close.

However, for his part, Scotland midfielder McGregor has one eye on the upcoming delayed 2020 European Championship while also looking to impress the next Hoops manager, whoever he may be.

He said: “The games are always important. Hibs are in the lead-up to a cup final, they will be bang at it as well.

“Even if they make a few changes, the boys who come in will be desperate to impress.

“The players will be playing for final places and will be highly-motivated.

“There is going to big changes here (at Celtic) in the summer so the guys who will be here are still playing for places as well.

“So I don’t think it will be a nothing game.

“I think everybody will be going out to try to impress and with the Euros coming around as well, you will be trying to find some form and keep your fitness going.

“Hibs are always a difficult team to play against, especially when you go to Easter Road.

“We expect a tough game and we will have to be at our best.”

It has been the long goodbye for skipper Scott Brown, who will be playing his final game for Celtic after 14 years at Parkhead before joining Aberdeen as player-assistant for next season.

Stand-in skipper McGregor admits it will be “very difficult” to replace his fellow midfielder.

He said: “Everyone has spoken recently about how influential Scott is, not just as a captain but as a person around the building. When he steps on the pitch, he is a real leader.

“He has been emotional this week although he doesn’t like to show it.

“The boys have been giving him gifts and saying thanks, it has been a nice atmosphere and we will hugely miss him.

“He has been such a great presence and friend and it will certainly be a quieter place without him.”

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1