RONNY Deila, the Celtic manager, faces an anxious wait to discover whether his captain Scott Brown will be fit to play any part in the club's crucial meetings with Aberdeen and Molde in the next seven days after the 30-year-old injured his knee in the warm-up prior to last night's League Cup quarter final victory against Hearts.

While the Parkhead side booked their place in the last four courtesy of goals from Leigh Griffiths and Tom Rogic, which meant a late Hearts strike from substitute Arnaud Djoum was merely a consolation, the only blot on the evening was the pre-game, which saw Brown limp off with a knee problem and Gary Mackay-Steven withdrawn from his place on the bench due to a groin issue. Brown will undergo an MRI scan on the joint today with Deila dreading the news that the captain will be unable to play his usual part on Saturday and Thursday in what are key matches win the club's Ladbrokes Premiership and Europa League campaigns respectively.

“Scott felt something in his knee during the warm-up," said Deila. "We will have to scan it tomorrow and then we can say what it is. I don’t think it is serious - I hope it isn’t. But, again, it is a knee and we have to wait for the scan. It makes the performance even better that we played that way after losing our captain. But we had an Israeli international and a Norwegian international there, so we have good players coming into that position. Those two played very well. Gary Mackay-Steven was feeling stiffness in his groin. He was going to be a sub, so we didn’t take any chances. But he will be ready very quickly."

While Deila reserved special praise on his two goalscorers on the night, Griffiths - who once again proved the tormentor of Hearts as he moved onto 14 for the season - and substitute Tom Rogic, who added energy to the Celtic midfield late on, Celtic's prolific striker revelled in shutting up the Hearts fans who had given him abuse all night due to his Hibs connections. He said the booking which he received for celebrating in front of both the home and away fans was worth the trouble.

“I get abuse everywhere I go – here you always get stick as an ex-Hibee but the only way to shut them up is to score and set up a goal," he said. "For the second goal I knew I was coming off soon after. I took a good touch as the ball came out the sky and I wanted to get to the byline as quickly as possible. It was a great flick – Tom came on in the second half and did really well and deserved his goal.

“I did it [the celebration] when I scored my first Celtic goal here," he added. "If I go to the Celtic fans then I’m going to get booked. If I head to the Hearts fans I’m going to get booked! So if you give me the option then there’s only one place I’m going! The yellow was a bit harsh, but if you give me a goal like that and a yellow card then I’ll take it all day long."

Robbie Neilson, the Hearts manager, also praised his side and said that on another day Nir Bitton might have received a second yellow card, rather being given the benefit of the doubt by match official John Beaton for a couple of blatant fouls when he had already been cautioned. "Possibly," said Neilson. "There were a couple of cards early doors that were similar incidents but the referee was obviously wanting to keep players on the park."