Celtic hat-trick hero McDonald accepts midweek omission

Celtic hat-trick hero Scott McDonald says the decision to rest him for the midweek defeat at Benfica was the right one.

"Every player wants to play, but I fully respect the manager's decision," said the striker after scoring Celtic's goals in a 3-0 win over Motherwell. "I'm behind him 100%. We were really unlucky the result did not go our way.

ord=Math.random()*10000000000000000;document.write('');
"Four minutes from time, they score. If it doesn't go in, everybody says the decision is right."

Gordon Strachan rested McDonald, saying he did not want to risk the Australian being injured in Lisbon ahead of the match against Motherwell.

"We were just really unlucky at the end of the game," McDonald told BBC Sport. "Okay, they hit the post and the bar, but we rode our luck and we were a bit unfortunate at the end and I'm just glad we have picked ourselves up and had a good result today."

The result not only put Celtic three points clear at the top of the Scottish Premier League but gave McDonald bragging rights with his former Motherwell team-mates and fans.

"There's a good, friendly rivalry and I am just glad I eventually came out on top and I don't think I could have handled the banter," he said.

McDonald praised the Well performance despite their defeat in Glasgow and admitted it had been strange playing against them for the first time.

"They are a club that will always have a special place in my heart and I'm glad to see them doing so well," he said.

"They played some good football and will think they were unlucky not to get on the scoresheet."

Have your say