CELTIC legend Kenny Dalglish insists Callum McGregor has nothing to prove to anyone outside Scottish football.

The Hoops captain has reached a new level since inheriting the captain’s armband from Scott Brown at the beginning of the Ange Postecoglou regime at the start of the 2021/22 campaign.

It was a massive burden on the 29-year-old Scotland international anchorman who is in line to make his 50th appearance for his country in Saturday’s Euro 2024 qualifier against Cyprus at Hampden.

HAMPDEN HOORAYS…Callum McGregor holds aloft the newly-won League Cup as his Celtic team-mates take a lap of honour after last month’s 2-1 triumph.

When the smoke of battle cleared last term, McGregor, Postecoglou and everyone at Parkhead were celebrating the team’s tenth title in 11 years.

The League Cup was also won, but the Scottish Cup proved to be a banana skin with an own goal from the unfortunate Carl Starfelt ending the quest in extra-time of the semi-final.

The Hoops are now on course for a silverware clean sweep and Dalglish is in no doubt that Glasgow-born McGregor is the right man to take the mantle of the team’s onfield leader.

The Celtic, Liverpool and Scotland great said: “Scott Brown did a great job as well but he had a few seasons when Rangers were in the third and second divisions and working their way back, so I think the opposition has been tougher since Callum took over.

SILVERWARE CELT…Callum McGregor with last season’s League Cup, his first honour as Hoops captain. 

“But the both of them have done a fantastic job. For someone to take over from Brown and have done as well as he has is a great credit to him.

“I think he has done brilliantly. The way he controls the games, he orchestrates everything. In most of the games Celtic have a huge percentage of the possession and predominantly he’s the one who gets most of it.

“He keeps the whole thing ticking over, keeps them organised. The full-backs end up playing inside instead of outside and he is orchestrating that. He is a great ally for Ange Postecoglou on the pitch.”

Sir Kenny, speaking to the Daily Record, continued: “I don’t see Celtic getting into the Premier League, do you? I think the others who have left Scotland and gone to play in other places have done well or they wouldn’t be in the Scotland squad.

“Just because you play here doesn’t mean you can’t play somewhere else.

“There’s no need to make a judgment on it because he’s not going anywhere. He’s happy and hugely successful where he is so I don’t see why he would want to move.”

CROWNING GLORY…Callum McGregor parades the Premiership trophy after last season’s phenomenal success.

Dalglish, now 72, added: “Having the armband or not doesn’t stop him helping people. Mouthing, directing. It’s better to have two captains on the pitch than none. I don’t think being Scotland captain would faze him.

“But you have more pressure on you as captain so he can relax for these ones, he has a couple of games off!

“The way he coordinates it for Celtic is brilliant. He’s someone that people look up to. Maybe the Cyprus game it will feel like a Scottish Premiership game because he’s always in control.

“I would have thought that, without looking at the stats, every game Celtic play he will be the player with the most touches.

“He controls the whole thing and if it’s a similar type of game this weekend then he will be used to that.”

McGregor also has the match against Spain at the national stadium on Tuesday evening to contend with before switching his concentration back to Celtic when they travel to Dingwall to take on Ross County five days later.

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