MATT O’RILEY is hoping for another capital show against Hibs tonight as Celtic play their last away Premiership fixture of the season.
The stylish midfield ace made his debut in Edinburgh in January last year shortly after his surprise £1.5million arrival from English third-tier side MK Dons.
O’Riley was a stand-out in the 2-1 win which kept Ange Postecoglou’s side in the hunt for the title as they continued to chase the Ibrox team.
JUST CAPITAL…debut Bhoy Matt O’Riley shows his skills in a tussle for possession with Hearts defender Alex Cochrane in Celtic’s 2-1 crucial win at Tynecastle in January last year.
He played his role a week later when the Hoops walloped Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s outfit 3-0 at Parkhead to take over pole position for the first time in 18 months on their way to a tenth championship success in 11 years.
O’Riley and his team-mates have staged an action replay this time around and the silverware will be handed over on Flag Day against Aberdeen in the east end of Glasgow on Saturday – but, first, there is the matter of overcoming Lee Johnson team at Easter Road this evening.
The Hoops’ form has dipped in the last couple of games and the former Denmark Under-21 international playmaker insists the champions must get back to the form more associated with a team looking for the eighth treble in the club’s history.
Reflecting on the displays in the loss at Ibrox and the home draw with St Mirren, O’Riley said: “We spoke about it and we addressed it in the analysis when we watched the games back from before in terms of things we can do better.
OH, SO CLOSE…Matt O’Riley holds his head in despair after being defied by keeper Robby McCrorie at Ibrox.
“And I think we’re quite aware of certain little things we can tweak. Hopefully, tonight we should see a change.
“Some of it just comes down to our mindset being ruthless in every game. I know it’s natural to drop off slightly because we’ve already won the league, but the team we are, we don’t want to do that.
“We want to set a high standard in every game and tonight we’ll try to do that again.”
O’Riley, speaking to Celtic TV, added: “I guess it’s a somewhat strange place to be in, but it’s a nice place to be in, obviously when you’ve got such a points’ gap between you and the teams below you.
“It’s nice, but at the same time we know we’ve got the Cup Final to look forward to, so these games leading up to it are good preparation and we would like to get some good results.
“We know it’s important to perform well consistently, that’s how you get results, not in terms of just focusing on the outcome of the result – we need to play well.
“And obviously the Cup Final is probably in the back of everyone’s minds. For us, it’s about being consistent every day training-wise, which I think we have been regardless of the recent results, doing that consistently, and then really implementing our ruthless mindset when we go into the games tonight and on Saturday.”
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