National call-up distracts Celtic striker Hooper

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The Independent Football

Gary Hooper has admitted that it will be difficult to retain focus in a busy week for Celtic after being called up for the England Under-21 squad for the first time.

The striker, signed from Scunthorpe United last summer, must play Inverness Caledonian Thistle tonight in the Scottish Cup and a League Cup final against Rangers on Sunday before he joins up with Stuart Pearce's squad for matches against Denmark and Iceland.

Hooper described the challenge as "very difficult". "It is going to be in the back of your mind", he conceded. "But the main thing is we have to get through tomorrow night. It will be very tough, especially going there in midweek. They will be up for it. We have to play the way we can and go for it, but the treble's not on my mind."