Dundee defender Jack Hendry has hailed the influence of former Celtic star Gary Caldwell – as he plots to derail the Hoops’ remarkable unbeaten run next weekend.
Hendry worked under Caldwell at Wigan Athletic after making the switch south of the border from Partick Thistle in 2015.
While the youngster’s career in England never caught fire, he has nothing but praise for the ex-Scotland internationalist and fellow centre-half following his time with the Latics.
After returning to Scotland in search of first team football, Hendry is cementing his spot in the heart of Neil McCann’s back-line.
He said: “Going down south was obviously an opportunity that was there for me and I thought I would go ahead and take it. I have learned a lot and I don’t regret it.
“You learn a lot of things off the pitch living by yourself and you need to grow up quickly. On the pitch, you need to learn different styles and how to work under certain people.
“Gary Caldwell was a big influence on me, he was the one who took me down there and I enjoyed working under him and the way he tried to play football.
“Gary helped me a lot, he obviously played in my position and told me certain things I should work on in my game. Maybe I could have done more – I don’t know – but it was good to learn from someone who has played at such a high level.
“And when I went on loan to MK Dons I thought Karl Robinson was a really good manager, the way he approached games and his player management was really good.
“But I came back up the road to get minutes and it has been enjoyable so far.”
Fresh from a dramatic 2-1 win over Hearts, Dundee’s next test will come against Celtic.
The Hoops saw off the Dark Blues 4-0 in their Betfred Cup clash at Dens last month, nevertheless Hendry is adamant their will be no inferiority complex despite the 59-game unbeaten run of their opponents.
He said: “There are things we can take from the cup game, definitely. It was obviously a disappointing result but it was a good performance, and if we can just change certain things I think we have a good chance.
“It will be a hard challenge but we’re going into it in good form. We’ll work on it over the next week or so, and the good thing is we have time to work on our game-plan on how to try and beat them.
“These are the games you want to play in, you want to test yourself playing against players who play in Europe every week.”
Meanwhile, Dundee have been handed a major boost after summer signing Josh Meekings stepped up his recovery from injury with an outing for their development squad.
The 25-year-old, who arrived at the club from Inverness, is yet to make his debut for Neil McCann’s side following a serious knee injury picked up last term.