MATT O’RILEY celebrated becoming a Century Bhoy by going into double figures with a neat goal in the 3-0 win over St Mirren in Paisley.

The on-fire midfielder claimed a meagre four last season, but he has wasted no time in reaching 10 with the second part of the campaign still to come.

The impressive O’Riley was his usual elegant self as he set up the opener for Daizen Maeda inside a minute and then slid a second past Zach Hemming a few moments later.

The London-born Danish international was also involved in the third goal before Paulo Bernardo picked out Greg Taylor to finish with a superb first-time left-foot drive.

MATT FINISH…masterful midfielder O’Riley rifles in his tenth goal of the season with Celtic’s second in the 3-0 win over St Mirren.

Reflecting on the recent sequence of victories, O’Riley said: “The message before this last block of games was to leave a mark and set the tone for where we are in the league.

“I think we have done that and the performances have been really good and we are in a good position now.

“We have been more ruthless in both boxes and more intent off the ball to press right from the off.

“I’m not thinking about numbers, to be completely honest. That’s probably why they are coming more this season and I’m just trying to do whatever is best for the team in any given moment.

“Usually, when that’s your mindset and you put the team first then things naturally happen.

“I wouldn’t have scored the goal if Paulo Bernardo didn’t pass me the ball and I wouldn’t have got the assist if Daizen Maeda didn’t make the run, so I’m lucky to have good team-mates around.”

The winter break now kicks in and O’Riley and most of his team-mates will be able to get some rest and prepare for the rigours of the challenges that await in the second period.

PUT YOUR HANDS TOGETHER FOR MATT O’RILEY…the Celtic playmaker celebrates his strike against Saints.

Japanese double-act Maeda and Reo Hatate, South Korean duo Oh Hyeon-gyu and Yang Hyun-jun and rarely-seen Australian winger will be involved in the Asian Cup which is due to run for a month and is scheduled to start on January 14.

Looking forward to a breather, O’Riley, speaking to Celtic TV, added: “I want to take care of my body and mind. It’s a good chance to rest and I’m fortunate enough to go and get some sun and chill out a bit.

“I will train a little bit, but not too much as we’ve played a lot of football and I need to rest the body.

“I will do my usual stuff like meditation and come back fresh.

“We know the demands of this football club, I’ve been here long enough now to know you can’t let your foot off the gas, so that will be the message when we come back.”

O’Riley and his colleagues will be back in action when the holders begin the defence of their Scottish Cup with a Fourth Round tie against Highland side Buckie Thistle at Parkhead on Sunday January 21.


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