Callum McGregor described Kyogo Furuhashi as a “superstar” after another League Cup final double from the Celtic striker brought the trophy back to Parkhead.
The Japan international struck either side of the break against Rangers at Hampden Park with his 23rd and 24th goals of the season before Gers striker Alfredo Morelos pulled back a goal which proved to be no more than a consolation.
Furuhashi also scored a double in last season’s final win over Hibernian and after repeating the feat against the Light Blues, he said: “I am very happy now. I thank my team-mates for my support, they gave me good passes and I am happy to score again.”
Captain McGregor had no doubts about what he was witnessing from Furuhashi.
He said: “He is a superstar. I can’t talk highly enough about him.
“In our system the striker has to be really disciplined and be in between the posts and again today he is in there with two great finishes, finishing off the team moves.
“It takes a lot of discipline to play in that position and that is two finals in a row he has scored the two goals that has won it.
“So, a real superstar and we are lucky to have him.”
McGregor was adamant that Celtic were well worthy of the win against their Old Firm rivals.
The Scotland midfielder said: “First half I thought we were really good, really dominant in the game and probably unlucky to go in (just) one up.
“But good from us in a showpiece occasion, stuck to our football and really causing them problems. I don’t think they won the ball back once in transition so really good from us.
“In the second half we had to show a slightly different side to us.
“They probably got on top of the game for 15-20 minutes and then we had to find our way back but I think that always happens in finals.
“We had to find a way through it and I think we did that really well. They had the ball but didn’t really threaten and we were happy in that mid-block and tried to press from there.
“Credit to the guys that came on and tuned into the game, the manager always asks that of them as well and we got over the line.”
McGregor had less to say when asked about Gers striker Fashion Sakala, who had been quoted as saying Rangers were a better team and a better club than Celtic in the build-up to the game.
He said: “We will let you write (about) that but again for us, we do our talking on the pitch.”