RYAN CHRISTIE hit the Perfect Ten when he slammed in the opener in the 2-0 win over Hibs at Parkhead in midweek.
It’s the first time the Celtic playmaker has reached double figures in one season – and the Scotland international was quick to praise Hoops boss Brendan Rodgers for breaking through the goal barrier.
Christie said: “The best I have had before was seven when I was at Aberdeen.
“I think the fact I am playing in such an attacking side means that there are so many chances in games and I am loving it just now. There are always opportunities and also I feel as though I have a load of confidence.
“The manager has told me that he sees me as an attacking threat, so I have a bit of license to get forward, so long as I am still doing all the other work.
“But the fact that the manager has so much faith in me and wants me to get up and in the box has really given me a lot of belief. I don’t think you can underestimate that when you are going onto the pitch.
“Callum McGregor and I are both always wanting to provide a threat and the manager is very good in giving us that freedom to go forward which is fantastic.
“It is obviously great to feel that you are contributing with goals and, hopefully, there are plenty more to come this season.”
Christie has already made an impact in the Betfred League Cup this season as the Hoops claimed the silverware for the third successive season on the first leg in their quest for the unprecedented treble treble.
The Highlander claimed the only goal in a tense Final at Hampden against his former Pittofrie team-mates when he volleyed an unstoppable drive beyond the helpless Joe Lewis just before the interval.
GOING…Ryan Christie gets in before Shay Logan to belt the ball goalwards.
GOING…Christie’s effort zooms past Aberdeen keeper Joe Lewis towards the net.
GONE…the ball is in the net as Christie takes off to celebrate. Scott Sinclair chases him with Dons trio Joe Lewis, Shay Logan and Graeme Shinnie experiencing that sinking feeling in the Betfred League Cup Final. Pics: Geo.
Now Christie and his team-mates will focus on the Scottish Cup on Sunday when they take on St Johnstone for the for the FIFTH time this season.
So far Rodgers’ men have an impeccable record against the Perth outfit with four wins out of four, 11 goals scored and none conceded.
The Hoops are 90 minutes from history at the weekend – a victory would surpass the current record of 23 successive wins in domestic Cup competitions and Christie said: “It is always nice to know that you are setting records and suchlike, but I don’t believe we ever think too much about any of that.
“First and foremost, it is about making sure we come through the game and go and play as well as we can.
“St Johnstone will be up for it and it is always a little bit strange when you are playing the same team so often in such a short space of time.
“You get these little anomalies some seasons, but I think we have to aim to be as professional as possible because we know how difficult St Johnstone will look to make it for us.”
Sunday’s Scottish Cup-tie is followed by the first of the Europa League double-header against Valencia with the first leg in Glasgow on Thursday and the return at the Mestalla the following week.
Christie added: “It is nice that we have given ourselves a little bit of a cushion in the league, but I think we are all aware it’s not a huge gap. Our aim is to kick on now, but the focus this week is a little bit different.
“It is an exciting week and, hopefully, we can come out of it with the results that we want.
“There are a few injury issues for the manager, but you can be sure that whoever is asked to play will give it everything to get us where we want to be.”