With tonight’s Europa League clash with Zenit St Petersburg just hours away, Celtic midfielder Callum McGregor has heaped praise on team-mate Scott Brown.
McGregor was the hero a week ago at Celtic Park, with the 24-year-old’s half-volley all that separated the two teams during a memorable first-leg in Glasgow.
And while McGregor will no doubt be keen to add to his tally against Roberto Mancini’s men this evening, he has admitted Brown is the real difference-maker for Celtic.
Speaking with BT Sport, McGregor claims that Brown sets the tempo during a game and it “doesn’t feel right” without the Celtic skipper on the pitch:
"You can look next to you and you know he's going to dig you out of a hole."
Callum McGregor, Celtic's hero from the first leg, talks up the influence of captain Scott Brown… ? pic.twitter.com/GXFzjykqwB
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) February 22, 2018
Brown and McGregor may have a difficult task on their hands at the Krestovsky Stadium tonight, with Zenit stunned by their 1-0 loss last week.
The Russian Premier League giants hadn’t played a competitive fixture in two months prior to their defeat seven days ago, due to an extended winter break.
However, with a week of preparation behind them, Zenit should have improved in terms of match fitness and will have a point to prove in their own backyard.