Scotland man Paul McGinn on using Celtic game to arrest bad Hibernian form
He’s the grandson of a former Celtic chairman, but Hibernian defender Paul McGinn is focussed on spoiling the Bhoys’ evening.
McGinn, the brother of Stephen and John, has had a solid personal season for Hibs thus far. He even made it into the Scotland squad, playing alongside John against Austria.
His fortunes reflected those of his team at the time. Hibs started the season on fire, competing for first place. However, three bad results on the bounce, against Rangers, Dundee United and Aberdeen, have put a different glint on Jack Ross’ squad.
McGinn admits Hibs haven’t offered anything up front in recent weeks. But he knows that Celtic’s inability to win at Easter Road, and the talent in the Hibernian squad, mean there’s a real game on tonight.
McGinn told Edinburgh Evening News:
“Over the last few weeks we have been toothless. We had results last season against the likes of Dundee United where Benjamin Siegrist was unplayable, and we could take that on the chin.
“But the last few games we’ve barely laid a glove on the opposition. We managed to get that out of our systems as we spoke about it. These things happen in football. I’ve been in the game a long time now and if we start well and win the game then it will all be forgotten.
“I knew we had a good record at Easter Road but I didn’t know it was that good. Celtic will be champing at the bit to get rid of that.
“It’s not a record which Celtic will have at many grounds so we know they’ll be coming here with all guns blazing so we will need to be at our best.”
Paul McGinn is right to expect aggressive Celtic against Hibernian tonight
Celtic, admittedly, have recently controlled games with more surgical precision than at the start of the season. If we’d played Hibs in the opening weeks, we may well have gone at them with everything.
Since the Aberdeen win, though, Celtic have been more methodical. The aggressive press and the clinical, pacy counter-attacks are there, but the Bhoys have run opposition ragged with accurate, plentiful passing and meaningful possession.
With Hibs under Jack Ross also liking to play on the front foot, with their own high press, it should be a fascinating tactical battle. And as my colleague David Walton said on our YouTube channel yesterday, you can bet the Hibees will throw everything at us and find their rhythm, form or no form.
Paul McGinn’s insight is extremely interesting. From a Celtic family himself, there’ll likely be some mixed emotions about trying to extend a miserable run of Bhoys results at Easter Road. That’ll end as soon as he’s kitted up and on the pitch, though.
For both teams, it’s a huge game. For Celtic, the chance to really stamp their title credentials. Hibs, meanwhile, need to arrest a worrying slump in form, despite a great start to the season.
Should be a good one, and you’ll find plenty of match analysis here on 67 Hail Hail.