SCOTT SINCLAIR made a breathtaking first impression with the Celtic fans when he scored the winning goal against Hearts on his debut – only hours after completing a £4.5million switch from Aston Villa on August 7 2016.
New boss Brendan Rodgers pitched the flamboyant forward into the fray as a second-half substitute for Stuart Armstrong with the game tied at 1-1 at Tynecastle.
With nine minutes to go, Leigh Griffiths whipped over a low cross from the left and Sinclair arrived with impeccable timing to ram in the points-clincher.
DREAM DEBUT…Scott Sinclair thumps in the winner against Hearts at Tynecastle in August 2016.
The one-time England international, who worked with Rodgers at Chelsea and Swansea City earlier in his career, became an immediate hit with the Hoops support.
Sinclair’s strike in Edinburgh was one of 25 goals he claimed in his first campaign at Parkhead as he played a pivotal role in The Invincibles’ season as the swashbuckling Celts raced to a fabulous silverware clean sweep of the three domestic honours.
He continued to perform with praiseworthy consistency and, in fact, claimed more strikes than any other Hoops player during the phenomenal treble treble sequence – 52 goals in 127 games.
ROVER’S RETURN…Scott Sinclair is back at his first club in Bristol.
All good things come to an end, alas, and Sinclair, who had become a bit-part player under Rodgers’ successor Neil Lennon, left Celtic for Championship outfit Preston in January 2020.
He was released at the end of the 2021/22 season and joined first club Bristol Rovers four months after departing Deepdale.
Now 34, Sinclair is under contract until June this year.
* TOMORROW: Don’t miss the adventures of another former Celt in CQN’s EXCLUSIVE series.