Former Scotland manager Gordon Strachan has praised the character of ‘Super’ John McGinn who is due to start back playing for Aston Villa this week after missing much of the season due to injury.

McGinn helped St Mirren to a League Cup triumph, beating Hearts in the final before a move to Easter Road where he helped the club to a historic Scottish Cup victory in 2016 then promotion back to the top-flight as champions the following season.

A big money move to Aston Villa followed and he immediately became a fans’ favourite, scoring the goal which won the play-off final which meant promotion to the Premier League.

John McGinn

He has  also established himself as a pivotal figure in the Scotland set-up and last week was named SPWA’s ‘International Player of the Year.’

Despite his success on the field McGinn remains a humble, down to earth type who has kept his feet on the ground.

Strachan rates the midfielder highly and speaking on a video chat with other coaches he explained why: He said: “I’m Scotland manager and I’m watching the U21s for the week,”

Strachan rates the midfielder highly and speaking on a video chat with other coaches he explained why: He said: “I’m Scotland manager and I’m watching the U21s for the week,”

“They were staying in the hotel across the water, but they were training at Mar Hall. They didn’t turn up until 3 – I’d been in at 10. At half nine I got a call saying ‘seven of the players are suffering with stiffness’.

“I was raging at that. Anyway, they turn up, I see them getting off. They’ve got their headphones in, the Celtic players would be together and the Rangers players would be together.

“These physios are helping, and they’re carrying the mannequins. Then John McGinn gets off the bus and goes ‘can I give you a hand lads?’

“Brilliant. So he picks up four mannequins and walks away, and I just though ‘I like that’.

“He was the only one that helped out of the whole lot, and by the way – in that group there were so many big hitters who were going to be the best players on earth, they had this, and that, and they had Instagram – they’re nowhere now.

“John McGinn is a top, top player – do you know why? He’s a top, top man. That wee thing, he wouldn’t have known it, me standing there watching, just made me go ‘I like that’.”