Celtic youngster Kieran Tierney admits he is looking forward to playing in his first Old Firm derby against Rangers, as the two teams prepare to go head to head in the semi-finals of the Scottish Cup on Sunday.
The 18-year-old has enjoyed a breakthrough season with the Bhoys this campaign, making 28 first-team appearances in all competitions, including featuring in vital matches both domestically and in Europe.
The left-back is now hoping to be involved during Sunday’s showdown with Rangers, but he is anticipating a tough game against Mark Warburton’s side, who sealed promotion to the Scottish Premiership earlier this month.
He said: “I’m not sure if the status of the teams makes the pressure different. Any team that gets to a semi-final deserves to be there. It would be a hard game no matter who we are playing.”
The two Glasgow giants have only met once since Rangers were demoted from the top flight in 2012, with Celtic securing a 2-0 victory in the semi-finals of the Scottish League Cup last season.
Tierney watched that match as a Celtic supporter and he admits it has been a whirlwind 12 months, as he has established himself as the club’s first-choice left-back and made his international debut for Scotland.
He added: “It’s been an incredible year. If you’d spoken to me at the semi-final last year, I’d never have thought I’d be in contention to play in a semi-final this year. It will mean everything, but any semi-final would. All the boys know what it means and what it takes.”