BRENDAN RODGERS has revealed a chat with Callum McGregor played a role in his return to Celtic.

The second time-around manager had a meeting with the club’s onfield leader and insisted the enthusiasm from the midfielder pointed him in the direction of a Parkhead comeback.

Rodgers admitted: “Callum was a big part of my decision to come back.

“I had a lunch with him for a few hours in Majorca and just understanding the squad and where it was at and what he felt the club was at, he gave me some great feedback that the group is hungry, it’s young and ready to keep pushing forward.

INSPIRATION…Celtic fans acclaim skipper Callum McGregor.

“For me, he’s an absolutely brilliant player, his brain, his view of the game is right up there with the very, very best I’ve ever worked with.”

Reflecting on his first meeting with the Scotland international in the summer of 2016, Rodgers, speaking to Celtic TV, added: “Callum was pivotal back then, just seeing a young player develop.

“I’ve obviously seen him when I left and just seeing him continue to make that growth was really pleasing.

“He’s robust, he plays many games, he’s the ultimate professional, but within that he has a great humility.

“So, I’m absolutely delighted that coming back here, he’s the club captain.”

There is no doubt there is a mutual admiration between the manager and the skipper as McGregor made clear in a report in CQN yesterday as he welcomed a reunion with the Irishman.

NUMBER TWENTY…Callum McGregor proudly grasps the Scottish Cup after his most recent silverware haul.

Ronny Deila introduced the Glaswegian to first-team football at the champions, but he developed swiftly under Rodgers and maintained an astonishing level of consistency while Neil Lennon and Ange Postecoglou occupied the dug-out.

He took his medal haul to a remarkable 20 after guiding the team to a 3-1 Scottish Cup Final win over Inverness Caley Thistle at Hampden earlier this month.

Here we go again as the Rodgers-McGregor double-act hope to propel the Hoops to further glory.

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