Hearts’ Jordan McGhee out to cap dream week with Celtic win

The Hearts defender captained the Scotland under-21s on Tuesday. Picture: Ian Georgeson

The Hearts defender captained the Scotland under-21s on Tuesday. Picture: Ian Georgeson

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New Scotland Under-21 captain Jordan McGhee aims to cap a memorable week by helping Hearts to victory over Celtic.

The 19-year-old was handed the armband in the European qualifiers against France and Northern Ireland after John McGinn was promoted to Gordon Strachan’s full squad.

And after leading the young Scots to a 3-1 victory over Northern Ireland on Tuesday, McGhee is keen to be involved as Hearts take on the Ladbrokes Premiership leaders at Celtic Park.

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McGhee, who has made 26 first-team appearances this season, said: “It’s an absolute honour to play for your country at any age group and to be captain is special.

“It was something I will never forget, especially to get three points on Tuesday was great for me.

“Everyone was there - my girlfriend, my mum and dad, who follow me everywhere, and my little sister. It was great backing for me, my family have always been there for me and I’m really thankful for that.”

McGhee’s Hearts team-mates Sam Nicholson and Jack Hamilton also played both games but he is sure they will be fresh for Parkhead.

“It’s not difficult, we will recover and look forward to the Celtic game,” he said.

“It’s a massive game for us and we will get our game heads on and hopefully get another three points. The boys will be fresh.

“It has happened a few times for the boys and myself. It’s great to get away with your country and see different places but you get back and get your head down and kick on.”

Hearts have recorded two league draws against Celtic this season and McGhee is confident they can take points when they face the top two in the coming seven days - also facing Inverness in between.

“Anything can happen in this league,” the versatile defender said.

“St Johnstone came to Tynecastle and took three off us, which was very disappointing. It’s still in the back of my mind, I never like losing, especially three pretty poor goals.

“But we go into the Celtic game with high hopes. We have Inverness and Aberdeen to play as well so I’m sure we will have a massive say in what happens in the run-in.

“Celtic are a really good team and it’s tough to play against them but every time we have played them we have held our own and I’m sure one day we are going to get closer and cause an upset.”

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