Top Line Summary 

  • Being in a good place
  • The vital role of the Celtic fans in the title run-in
  • The manager exudes calmness and is emotionally detached
  • Getting the band back together
  • Not thinking about Euro 2024

Everything that Greg Taylor said to the media ahead of Celtic's trip to Tynecastle to face Hearts

Are the players in a good place after Wednesday night?

Yes. It was a big performance and a big win. We took the second half from the Motherwell game into the Dundee match. Hopefully, we can build from there.

The manager said that was a top-level performance. Do you think if you get close to reaching similar levels in the run-in you will be okay?

Yes. We don't look too far ahead. We want to try and reach a similar level of performance on Sunday, if not better. It doesn't always end in a scoreline like that but certainly, we will judge ourselves on trying to hit similar levels of performance. Normally results will take care of themselves.

You know what it's like here and that it can be one game that changes the narrative. Do you hope that can be Wednesday night or even Fir Park?

I think often the narrative is on the outside. It is not normally within the building. You have to try and avoid that and of course, it is difficult with social media and everything that goes on now in football. The manager is a big believer in the group inside the building being very together and we believe what we do here and that normally stands us in good stead and on Wednesday night it did.

In terms of getting late goals at Fir Park and an emphatic 7-1 win against Dundee in midweek, the whole group must think we'll be okay, right?

We know, of course, that with 10 games to go, it is the business end of the season and right now our focus is on Hearts as that is the next game and that is the most important.

Another thing the manager said in midweek was the atmosphere between the supporters, the team and the manager was like it was the first time he was around. He said there was a real unity. Did you feel that on the pitch?

You felt it coming off at half-time. These things work hand-in-hand. If we deliver the performances then the fans will back us. The place was bouncing going in at half-time 6-0 up. The fans were in good voice on Wednesday night.

How big a role could that be?

I think that will be vital. We are all together in the building but I include the fans in that too when we are playing at home and there are 60,000 behind you and it helps. There will be limited numbers at Tynecastle on Sunday but I am sure the Celtic fans as they always do will find their voice. Hopefully, we can deliver the performance that helps them do that.

The last couple of games have been good for you with goals and assists how much of a boost has that been to you?

It is something I always want to try and add to my game - goals and assists - but it doesn't always work out like that. Throughout the season there have been good chances created by all of us and at times we have not taken them. The last couple of games, especially, the second half at Motherwell, we knew we had to get the performance and result and scoring that amount of goals was nice the other night.

A few of the players have mentioned that you took responsibility at Motherwell and got rid of the anxiety that the manager had spoken about. Did you feel that carried over into the Dundee game?

I think the manager was really big on that. He stayed really calm and just spoke us through a few points where we could be better in the game. He took all of the emotion out of it and it is so easy to get caught up in emotional moments when you are down. Everyone in the building wants to be successful and tries their hardest every day in training and in games to try and deliver that for the fans. The manager just said this is where we can be better in the game and we took that into the second half.

Cameron Carter-Vickers was back, Alistair Johnston was back, and you were back as well. Do you feel that with all those vital squad players returning can you help propel you?

That's it. When players are out it gives other opportunities but it helps to have a settled team. It helps to have players hit their rhythm. The players you spoke about there Cameron and Alistair are vital to this team. To have them back involved was really good.

The players here have been over the course and distance. How much of a role will that play in the run-in?

I hope it plays a big part because we've got good experience within the group. The last couple of years have been a really successful time for this playing group. It's changed a wee bit this year but we have still got a good core of players in there who know what success means. They know what it takes. I certainly hope that carries us in good stead.

We are just a few months away from the Euros. How are you feeling about it?

I am excited. Hopefully, I will be involved in the March games coming up. It is all about trying to keep my form and my fitness and hope that you are on the plane going to Germany. It will be an unbelievable experience for the lucky 23 who get to go.

You are all professional and you will be trying every game but how good is it to know that there is a big thing waiting at the end?

Yes, you do know it is there because it is inevitable and it has been brought up today. It is not something that is right on my mind if I am being totally honest. It is still a fair chunk away and there is a lot of football to be played before then. I try and focus on Hearts right now for Celtic as that is the most important game and we'll see where that takes us come the end of the season.