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McInnes happy to have avoided Celts in last four

By Paul Burrows

Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes was relieved to avoid favourites Celtic in the William Hill Scottish Cup semi-finals after his team were instead paired with holders Hibernian.

The Dons kept alive their hopes of winning the competition for the first time since 1990 by defeating Partick Thistle 1-0 thanks to a Graeme Shinnie goal at Pittodrie.

McInnes said: "It is a good draw and I think Hibs will see it exactly the same way as we do.

"If we are all being honest, I think the three other teams would have wanted to avoid Celtic (who will play Rangers) because they are the strongest team at the minute.

"From that point of view we are pleased but it is nothing against Hibs and I am sure Neil Lennon will be as pleased as ourselves.

"I think when you get to a semi-final, you expect a tough opponent and that is exactly what we are getting with the experience of their manager and the experience of them having already won the cup and being holders.

"It will be a very close game I am sure but we just need to make sure we go to Hampden in good form."

Shinnie's goal as half-time approached separated the sides in what was a scrappy quarter-final clash.

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