LEIGH GRIFFITHS has admitted he will NOT be looking for a hat-trick at Hampden on Sunday.
The striker has already played in two Hampden Finals and been a loser on both occasions – to Hearts and Celtic – and doesn’t want to complete the terrible threesome against Dundee United.
Griffiths and his former Hibs team-mates hardly got a kick when Edinburgh rivals Hearts hammered them 5-1 in the Scottish Cup showdown in 2012 and he limped out of the Easter Road side’s 3-0 loss against Neil Lennon’s men the following year.
He said: “Two Finals and two defeats, so, hopefully, it will be third time lucky on this occasion – if I’m selected, of course.
“This is my chance to overcome any hoodoo. I’ve been good in semi-finals and scored in them all. Now my target is a win and to score against United.
“I got the opener in our 2-0 win in the semi-final which was the first Glasgow derby in quite awhile and everybody was really looking forward to it.
“We knew we had to put in a good performance and I think we did that.
“I didn’t get caught up in the intensity of the occasion. My sole objective in any game is to play well and score goals irrespective of how big or how small the crowd is.”
The 24-year-old frontman has hit a rich seam of form at the right time in the campaign with five goals in his last seven outings, but insisted there was no secret to the transformation in his game.
He said: “I spoke to the manager, Ronny Deila, at the start of January and asked him for a run in the team and if I got that I would score goals. Thankfully, I’m repaying him now.”
Griffiths apologised to Parkhead fans after missing a penalty-kick at Tannadice on Sunday, but made amends when he headed in the equaliser to force a replay in Glasgow on Wednesday.
He added: “Sunday was a difficult game tarred by decisions that have should have been dealt with properly.
“But this is another game and we’ve got to remain focused. It’s a Cup Final and they’ll be up for it and so will we.
“League form goes out the window in Cup-ties. It’s a one-off encounter and anyone can win on their day.
“We will have a full week’s training to prepare us for Sunday. For me to score in a Cup Final would get the monkey off my back.
“It would be an honour to play in such a game at the national stadium and, if I’m picked, I’ll give 100 per cent to help Celtic lift the trophy.”