Hibernian vs St Johnstone in the Scottish Cup final this weekend is certainly a contest that should interest Celtic fans.
Hoops supporters will have been itching for Celtic to make the showpiece occasion ourselves. However, for the first time since 2016, the final won’t involve the Bhoys.
But even so, that’s not to say we shouldn’t have an interest in this one. In fact we should, considering the game will involve several links to Celtic that’s worth keeping an eye on ahead of the summer.
For the contest will involve three young talents linked with big moves to Parkhead ahead of next season. On one side, you have Kevin Nisbet and Josh Doig. Both have been mooted for a major step-up to Celtic this summer. According to the Scottish Sun, we aren’t afraid of a potential £3m outlay for Nisbet, whilst Sky Sports believes Celtic could move for Doig over the next couple of months too.
As for St Johnstone? Celtic were said to have been watching Ali McCann as recently two weeks ago. The Sunday Post [print edition, 09/05, back page] claimed that were monitoring McCann specifically during Saints’ semi-final clash vs St Mirren.
Hibernian vs St Johnstone could help sway Celtic minds
With all three scheduled to meet live this Saturday on BBC One Scotland and Premier Sports, it’s a rare chance to watch them all in action for 90 minutes. Grabbing the headlines in this one could be exactly what each man needs to sway Celtic supporters’ minds.
In terms of who looks the most attractive at the minute, you have to go with Nisbet and Doig. Celtic are going to have major shortages both up front and at left-back this summer. If Celtic were able to snap them up for less than £5m combined, that would be a superb bit of business.
As for McCann, it’s always wise to monitor youngsters who are making a name for themselves around Scotland. However, you have to wonder whether the Saints man is what we need given the abundance of talent we have in midfield. Any reinforcements in that area, you would imagine, would have to be experienced and potentially be able to lead.
McCann would be a long-term project. Not particularly someone who could come in and make an immediate impact or even be expected to. That’s what currently differentiates him from the other two. The truth is Nisbet and Doig would easily get plenty of minutes at Celtic just now. McCann is perhaps in a different boat in his development.
But Saturday’s meeting could perhaps prove who the real breakthrough talent is. If they can shine on a stage such as the Scottish Cup final and make the game their own, it could do wonders for the one who stands out.
And make no mistake, they know Celtic will be watching closely.