THREE of the Celtic heroes who spearheaded The Invincibles’ crescendo to the unforgettable silverware clean sweep of 2016/17 will be up for grabs at the end of the season – for FREE!

Patrick Roberts, Leigh Griffiths and Scott Sinclair were Brendan Rodgers’ attacking trio against Aberdeen in the Scottish Cup Final on May 27 at Hampden.

The team were on the brink of completing an unbeaten campaign when they faced the Dons and were rocked when future Celt Johnny Hayes opened the scoring in the ninth minute. Stuart Armstrong, thankfully, fired in a quickfire equaliser and Tom Rogic waltzed his way into the history books with a solo winner in stoppage time.

Roberts, who was substituted in the fourth minute of added-on time by Erik Sviatchenko, Griffiths and Sinclair played their part in a dramatic conclusion to a memorable football odyssey.

Coincidentally, all three are out of contract at the same time and could be on the look-out for new clubs.

PATRICK ROBERTS, who enjoyed a wonderful two-and-a-half year loan period in Glasgow before returning to Manchester City in 2018, was involved in five further temporary transfers before eventually leaving Pep Guardiola’s side for good in January after just one appearance in seven years.

The exciting touchline flyer claimed 18 goals in 78 first-team outings for the Hoops while winning seven honours.

The 25-year-old winger agreed a short-term contract with English third-tier outfit Sunderland and has made an immediate impact.

Manager Alex Neil is hoping the player, who cost The Etihad giants £12million when he signed from Fulham, can inspire the Wearside club to a place in the play-offs and a shot at promotion.

“He’s a little magician, isn’t he?,” grinned the former Hamilton Accies boss after a recent game. “I thought his quality was great. We’ve had to work him to get him to this point in terms of giving him enough minutes and building him up.

“But he has been showing signs of coming alive over the last few weeks.”

Neil, speaking to The Chronicle, added: “I think we’ve managed him really well, because he has completed the full 90 minutes – if somebody had said that to me three weeks ago, I wouldn’t have believed them because he’s struggled for fitness.

“He hadn’t played a lot of minutes, but when he is fit and firing, he’s a great player to watch.

“If you’re a fan, he gets you off your seat. He’s really exciting, he drifts past people, he sees passes that others don’t see. He was excellent.”

SCOTT SINCLAIR, who was bought from Celtic by Neil during his time as Preston manager in January 2020, will also be a free agent at the end of the term.

The 33-year-old one-time England international who was also played for Manchester City has made 25 appearances for the Championship side this time around and has scored two goals, both in the League Cup against Mansfield.

Sinclair, who was bought by Rodgers for £6million from Aston Villa, made his debut 24 hours later against Hearts at Tynecastle in the opening day of the league season – and scored the winning goal in a 2-1 triumph to get off to a superb start.

However, the Deepdale club are in no rush to offer an extension and boss Ryan Lowe, who took charge in December last year, admitted he has some big calls to make in the forthcoming weeks with the ex-Hoops fans’ favourite just one of 15 players coming out of contract.

The manager, speaking to the Daily Record, said: “Every single player has had their opportunity to showcase what they are about since I’ve come through the door and they’ll continue to get that.

“Because, who knows, someone might get in the team from now until the end of the season, rip it up and then you’ve got no choice but to make sure that they stay with you.”

LEIGH GRIFFITHS has seen his career turned upside down since Ange Postecoglou triggered the 12-month extension in his contract in July.

The 31-year-old striker, however, didn’t kick a ball in competitive action for the Hoops after making a 45-minute appearance against West Ham in a pre-season friendly.

The former Scotland international, who scored 123 goals in eight years for the Parkhead side, agreed a term-long loan deal with Dundee, but that was brought to an early halt at the turn of the year with the player scoring only three goals in 17 outings.

Griffiths was returned to the Hoops who paid off the remainder of his contract and he joined League One Falkirk with manager Martin Rennie hoping he can help them in their push for a play-off place in their bid for a place in the Championship.

After 31 games, the team are in fifth place a massive 26 points behind runaway leaders Cove Rangers and six adrift of fourth-placed Queen’s Park.

The summer may bring big changes for all three performers who can proudly take their place in Celtic folklore.

FOR THE RECORD: The team that beat Aberdeen to clinch the treble was: Gordon; Lustig, Simunovic, Boyata, Tierney (sub: Rogic 27); Brown, McGregor, Armstrong; Roberts (sub: Sviatchenko 94), Griffiths, Sinclair. Unused subs: De Vries, Gamboa, Bitton, Forrest, Dembele.

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