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Ryan Porteous hopes to make childhood dream come true by winning cup with Hibs

St Johnstone v Hibernian – Betfred Cup – Semi Final – Hampden Park
(Image credit: Jeff Holmes)

Ryan Porteous will achieve a lifetime ambition if he helps Hibernian win the Scottish Cup against St Johnstone at Hampden Park on Saturday.

The boyhood Hibs fan was in the stands as a youth player in 2016 when the Easter Road club won the cup for the first time in 114 years with a last-gasp 3-2 win over Rangers at the national stadium.

Now, the 22-year-old centre-back is looking forward to making his own Hibs history against a Saints side gunning for a cup double after winning the Betfred Cup for the first time in February.

He said: “This was my dream growing up. That one thing that you really want to try to do is win the Scottish Cup for Hibs.

“Regardless of whether the team did it in 2016 or not, it has always been a life-long goal for me and now that we have put ourselves in that position as a team, it’s something that I definitely don’t want to pass by.

“We  know it will be a very tough game, we have seen how good St Johnstone have been this season, especially in high-pressure cup competitions, they have pulled off some fantastic results.

“We know it will be a tough game but we also back our ability and trust ourselves that if we go there, compete, play well, work really hard, hopefully it will be a good day for us.”

From the 2016 cup final squad, David Gray, who headed in the dramatic added-time winner  Paul Hanlon, Lewis Stevenson, Martin Boyle and Darren McGregor are still at the club.

McGregor is vying with Porteous for a starting slot in a Hibs side which clinched third place in the Premiership for the first time since 2005.

Porteous has successfully bridged the gap from supporter to player and wants to join his illustrious teammates in Easter Road folklore.

He said:  “I was in my last year at high school with Hibs under-17s and about to go full time.

“It was one of the best days of my life being there as a fan and I can only imagine doing it as a player will be just as good if not even better.

“On that day, if you had told me that in a couple of years I would be playing alongside these players in national semi-finals and national cup finals, I wouldn’t have believed you. But we are here now and it will go to plan if we put on a show and it all goes well.

“When I first went full time, I was in awe of players like David Gray, Lewis and Darren, after watching them when I was younger, seeing them become legends to then having to quickly realise these guys were my teammates and colleagues and now my friends.

“It has changed for me, from being a massive fan to realising this is my job now and it is time to step up and try to become a legend like them.

“I’ve spoken to them many times and heard loads of stories about before during and after the final and it seemed like a special day for everyone involved.

“It is something that club had wanted to achieve more often than they have in the past.

“It has not been good enough for a number of years. Hibs should be competing in finals and semi-finals every year and trying to get that third place, fourth place in the league every year.”