Celtic news and transfers LIVE: Hoops ready for Valencia test as Brendan Rodgers hails star man
Rodgers: McGregor is ‘wonderful’
Brendan Rodgers knew Callum McGregor was a player the first time he set eyes on the Celtic playmaker.
But the Parkhead manager reckons it’s the midfielder’s second sight that makes him stand out from the rest.
Rodgers has raved about McGregor since day one and the 25-year-old quickly went from fringe man to one of the first names on the teamsheet.
In simpler times, player positions were known as midfielders, left-backs or strikers, whereas today they go by numbers, with guys who play at four, six, 10 or in some circumstances even an 11-and-a-half.
But for Rodgers, McGregor is never anything less than an eight – out of 10. The boss saw Oli Burke, Scott Sinclair and Scott Brown hog the limelight in Sunday’s 5-0 Scottish Cup scudding of St Johnstone.
Yet it was unsung hero McGregor’s vision that had thrilled his gaffer going into Thursday’s Europa League showdown with Valencia.
The simplicity of Callum’s game is all based on his view of the game. The really gifted players have a view on every position on the pitch.
I can play Callum as a left-back moving inside, I can play him as a No.10 and he gets a goal.
I can play him deeper as a playmaker and he can play on the left, coming in to be the extra man in midfield. No matter where he plays he ends up being the best player on the pitch.
He just has this wonderful view of football – he gets it and understands the game. Callum also has this glorious first touch that sets him up whatever way he wants to go.
He is such a big talent and I am happy he is getting the accolades now. Sometimes if you are not running about smashing a player, you might not get the plaudits and recognition.
But Callum has the ability and courage to get on the ball, pass it and take it under pressure. He’s a wonderful player to have.