Former Celtic favourite and outspoken pundit Chris Sutton has lauded Hoops midfielder Callum McGregor after noticing a growing influence in Neil Lennon’s starting eleven, The Daily Record report.
No player has featured more for Celtic this season than McGregor and his latest display against Kilmarnock, during which he wore the captain’s armband, won plaudits from supporters.
The energetic 26-year-old is a real force in the middle of the park and looks destined to be one of our key players during the title run-in and final chase for trophies between now and May.
Sutton thinks he has really blossomed and has tipped him to be Scott Brown’s long-term successor as club captain.
As quoted by The Daily Record, he said: “He’s the natural heir to Brown and filled in splendidly last season when the skipper was out for a couple of months. McGregor has that respect from his colleagues which would make him an obvious choice to don the armband.
“In fairness, he doesn’t seem to lack a voice even when Brown is in the side. The pair of them work in tandem, but you would imagine he’d take-on even more responsibility were Brown to miss out at any point in future weeks.
“McGregor is a wonderful footballer with genuine technique to play at the highest level. He’s also a man now. Someone within the group who has earned the respect of his peers.”
Destined for post-Brown greatness?
McGregor’s future is hard to predict.
While he signed a new long-term contract in November, there are often links to the English Premier League.
Most recently it was reported by The Scottish Sun over the weekend that Leicester were ready to pay as much as £25m to reunite him with former boss Brendan Rodgers.
As we’ve seen in recent history, it’s hard to imagine Celtic rejecting a bid of that weight for a homegrown talent.
While it may feel like destiny he one day fully replaces Brown as the club’s official captain, that clearly depends on whether he’s sticking around for years to come or not.
Right now, he appears to be a happy Bhoy.
We can only hope that remains the case in the upcoming transfer window and beyond because, as Sutton points out, he has all the attributes to be the leader we will need when the current captain hangs up his boots.