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  • Mackay-Steven: Debut goal was a bit of blur

    Mackay-Steven: Debut goal was a bit of blur

    By: Mark Henderson on 11 Feb, 2015 23:07

  • GARY Mackay-Steven admitted his Celtic debut couldn’t have gone any better after he sensationally opened the scoring after just 38 seconds at Firhill to set the champions on course for victory over Partick Thistle.  

    When the home side failed to clear a corner, the 24-year-old reacted quickest, drilling a shot under goalkeeper Scott Fox to get his Hoops career off to the perfect start.

    Stuart Armstrong – who joined the club along with Mackay Steven on transfer deadline day from Dundee United – also marked his Celtic bow with a goal, doubling the advantage on the half-hour mark with a smart finish.

    Both new Bhoys made a key contribution as Ronny Deila’s men blew their Glasgow rivals away in a blistering first-half performance and, while the hosts offered more resistance after the break, Stefan Johansen settled the contest with a well-taken third goal.

    A sparkling showing from the Bhoys had produced a seventh successive win in all competitions, moving them three points clear at the league summit.

    And while that was the most important outcome from the match, this was a day that Mackay-Steven will never forget whatever happens during the rest of his Paradise career.  

    “I’m obviously delighted to have made my debut, first and foremost, and to score straight away settled some nerves,” he said, speaking after the match. “It was a great day all round for me.

    “I have been here just over a week and I was itching to just play my first game. I was ineligible at the weekend and I didn’t like watching from the stands, I just wanted to be out there with the boys.

    “It came tonight and it was a great experience for me, the boys helped me through it. It (the goal) was a bit of blur. You just want to get your first tough right to settle into the game but to score so early was great for me and the team overall played very well and we were well worth the three points.”

    Mackay Steven and Armstrong couldn’t have wished for a more memorable start in the Hoops but the pair know they must maintain these high standards, with competition for places so fierce in Paradise.  

    “It’s funny as we have been getting a bit of stick at the club for doing everything together,” smiled Mackay-Steven. “We are good pals and it was only right he should score as well tonight. I was really happy for him, and he played very well, too. It was great for us.

    “If you get the nod, the standard of player here is so high that you need to take your chance and convince the manager that you can cut it at this level and hopefully we did that tonight. There are so many quality players at the club and it’s just great for the manager to keep everyone on their toes.” 

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