Scott Sinclair: ‘I could have hit hat-trick on another day’

Celtic's Scott Sinclair, right, is tackled by Lee Wallace inside the penalty area at Hampden on Sunday.

Celtic's Scott Sinclair, right, is tackled by Lee Wallace inside the penalty area at Hampden on Sunday.

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Celtic striker Scott Sinclair is frustrated by his failure to join Moussa Dembele in the Old Firm hat-trick annals following Sunday’s victory over Rangers.

Dembele scored the game’s deciding goal in the dying moments to take his tally to four against Celtic’s greatest rivals, having scored three times in the 5-1 win last month.

Sinclair scored in the league fixture as well but passed up several opportunities to add to his season’s haul at Hampden, much to his annoyance. While he is delighted that Celtic have secured a place in the final on 27 November against Aberdeen he wondered whether he has ever been presented with so many scoring opportunities in one match.

“It was a great win and we are happy to be through to the final,” he said. “The start to the game was quite tense. You could feel it in the first five to ten minutes with both sets of fans. It was one of those games for us and certainly myself.

“Since I’ve been here, I don’t know if I’ve had so many chances in one game,” he added. “They wouldn’t go in for me, but we got the winner in the end.

“I could have had a hat-trick on another day, I believe that. I had so many chances and in any other game, I could have put them all away. But I need to move on. I need to keep getting those chances and hopefully the next time I do score them.”

Sinclair relishes the thought of securing a trophy before December. He hasn’t given up on thoughts of scoring a hat-trick at Hampden – he just hopes such an achievement has been delayed a month or so.

“I came here to win things and if we can get a bit of silverware before Christmas, it will let us build on that,” he said.

“It’s great for me if I can come to Celtic and win things and I’m sure all the new boys will say the same.

“The last final I played in was the Championship play-off with Swansea in 2011.

“We beat Reading 4-2 to get promoted and I did manage to score a hat-trick that day. If I could do that again, that would be great!

“But that was five years ago now,” he added. “It’s great for me individually to be back in a final and great for the club.”

Sinclair paid tribute to manager Brendan Rodgers, whom he has known since their days together at Chelsea.

“A winning mentality is the big thing the manager has given the squad,” he said.

“No matter whether it’s the League Cup or Champions League, he wants to win every game.

“He [Rodgers] has instilled that in every one of the players and you can see that out on the pitch.

“We are fighting for each other out on the pitch, we are winning the ball back and creating chances. There’s a great atmosphere around the club and I’m just enjoying being here.”

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