Scott McDonald admits annoyance after Helicopter Sunday goal

Scott McDonald equalises for Motherwell as the championship slips away from Celtic in 2005. Picture: SNS
Scott McDonald equalises for Motherwell as the championship slips away from Celtic in 2005. Picture: SNS
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Scott McDonald has admitted he was annoyed by comments from Celtic players about his famous goals against the club on ‘Helicopter Sunday’.

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A 21-year-old McDonald scored a last-gasp double for Motherwell to secure a 2-1 victory which saw his boyhood heroes lose the 2005 title to Rangers in the closing minutes of the campaign.

The Scottish Premier League trophy changed direction in mid-air as Rangers celebrated at Easter Road and McDonald admitted he found criticism hard to take when he signed for Celtic two years later.

McDonald, who was brought up in Australia by Scottish parents, told BBC Sport: “A couple of players have said a few things from their end and I think to myself: ‘Well, don’t worry about what I did that day, have a look at yourself and look at the chances you missed. Don’t look at what I did and how I celebrated and when I went to Celtic have comments about, I shouldn’t have done this or that. Maybe you should have done something on the day to make it different’.

“It’s annoying because at that point in my career path I was still a young lad trying to make my way.”

The striker, who could be in line for a switch to Australian football after leaving Motherwell a second time, opened up on a subject he is normally reluctant to discuss.

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“I was in shock after the game,” he said. “I thought I was going to get lynched. I remember sitting there in tears after the game with my towel over my head.

“All I can remember is Phil O’Donnell coming up to me, ripping the towel off my head and saying: ‘Get your head out your backside, stuff them, it’s about us, it’s about you doing well for you. I played for them but it doesn’t matter’.

“And coming from a guy like that who played for Celtic was huge for me.

“I supported Celtic. People don’t realise I was in the Celtic end at Ibrox three or four games before when Craig Bellamy scored the winner and everyone was thinking that was the league over. And sure enough three or four games later I was changing the outcome.”

In an interview to be played in full on Saturday’s Sportsound on Radio Scotland, he added: “My father-in-law, who I got tickets for in the Celtic end, I was catching a flight down to see my now wife after the game. He was hoping he would be celebrating the title.

“My grandfather was in a Celtic supporters club in Melbourne in the early hours of the morning, very drunk, and it’s safe to say he had to get bodyguards to get out.

“My father-in-law didn’t look at me for a week. He sat up one end of the plane and I was up the other.”

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