A season like no other is drawing to a close – but the winner of the Scottish Cup is yet to be decided.
St Johnstone and Hibernian go head-to-head at Hampden on Saturday afternoon, with both sides looking to crown memorable seasons with one last moment of glory.
For Callum Davidson’s St Johnstone team, a remarkable double could be on the cards after the Perth side upset the odds to lift the League Cup earlier this season.
Hibs have proved themselves to be ‘best of the rest’ after Rangers and Celtic in the Premiership and want to add to their third-place finish with what would be their fourth Scottish Cup triumph.
Will the Saints go marching on?
St Johnstone reached the final having overcome Dundee and Clyde in the early rounds before defeating Rangers at Ibrox on penalties to make the semi-final.
At Hampden, they came out on top in the battle of the Saints, beating St Mirren 2-1 to book their place in Saturday’s showpiece game.
There has been drama off the park, though, with an outbreak of coronavirus at the club forcing a number of players into isolation.
Saints manager Davidson has insisted that the health of everyone at the club comes first, but has seen his plans disrupted and won’t have a full squad as he looks to achieve a second cup triumph in a matter of months.
“It’s a hard situation but I know the lads who are fit and available are raring to go,” Davidson said. “The ones who are maybe not as fit and available say they are raring to go as well.
“It’s going to be a difficult team selection. It will only be the right one if we win it, I suppose.
“I had a laugh and joke about it, it’s not something they teach on the Pro Licence, how to deal with guys who were isolating for 10 days, having Covid, coming back at different times and not being able to train, all of these things when you are probably preparing for the biggest game of your life, definitely your season.
“It’s not ideal. It’s going to take a monumental effort from everybody involved to go and get a result on Saturday.”
Hibs hope for Hampden heroics
For Hibernian boss Jack Ross there’s a romance about the Scottish Cup and he’s admitted to being excited ahead of the final.
Ross guided his team past Queen of the South, Stranraer and Motherwell before beating Dundee United 2-0 in the semi-final.
“I understand that if we are successful on Saturday it will absolutely be recognised as an outstanding season for the club,” Ross said.
“But irrespective of the result, the players and staff should be given a lot of credit.
“The players have shown huge consistency in their approach to want to achieve success.
“I told them how proud I was of them to achieve third, the club hadn’t done it for a long time and I’m equally as proud that they have reached a cup final.
“But I am desperate for them to get their rewards at the weekend by winning a trophy. That is a huge motivation for us.”