Monday 23 September 2019

Rodgers hails hat-trick hero Sinclair after frantic Dons finale

Aberdeen 3 Celtic 4

Clinical: Brendan Rodgers says Scott Sinclair (p) has had an eye for a goal since he was a talented teenager. Photo: PA
Clinical: Brendan Rodgers says Scott Sinclair (p) has had an eye for a goal since he was a talented teenager. Photo: PA

Brendan Rodgers hailed Scott Sinclair after his hat-trick helped Celtic to a 4-3 win over Aberdeen at Pittodrie which saw five goals in the final 14 minutes.

The winger put the Hoops ahead after six minutes but that advantage was cancelled in the 24th minute when Dons forward Stevie May scored from the spot.

Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers gestures to the fans. Photo: PA
Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers gestures to the fans. Photo: PA

Sinclair restored the Hoops' lead in the 76th minute but in the 83rd minute the home side drew level again from the spot through Sam Cosgrove.

Substitute Odsonne Edouard made it 3-2 before setting up Sinclair for his third and although Lewis Ferguson reduced the lead again in the 90th minute the visitors took the spoils to take them three points ahead of Rangers with a game in hand before the trip to Ibrox on Saturday.

Rodgers was pleased with a "brilliant" result and said of Sinclair: "He knows where the goal is. He wants to be in there to score. He has done it since I knew him at 16 years of age as a young player.

"In big games he has always produced. He loves that type of occasion and all his finishes were very good."

Aberdeen's Andrew Considine (left) and Celtic's James Forrest battle for the ball. Photo: PA
Aberdeen's Andrew Considine (left) and Celtic's James Forrest battle for the ball. Photo: PA

Rodgers admitted there was a question mark over left-back Kieran Tierney, out again with a hip injury, for the Rangers game.

"We will see in the next 48 hours. If not, it is unfortunate, but we have others to come into the squad and it is always an opportunity," he said.

Dons boss Derek McInnes claimed the introduction of fit-again Edouard, signed from Paris St-Germain in the summer after a loan spell at Parkhead, for Callum McGregor in the 70th minute, when it was 1-1, made all the difference.

He said: "In the dying embers of the game, when that physical output from our players with defenders tired having been worked all the game, and then a £10m striker comes on and can impose himself on it with his running power and his freshness, that did pay dividends for them."

Irish Independent

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