Celtic vs Hearts, Scottish Cup 2023, News, Scores, Scores, Socceroos, Goal by Aaron Mooy, Ange Postecoglou
Celtic stayed on course for a treble at home after Saturday’s 3-0 Scottish Cup quarter-finals win at Hearts, with Socceroos star Aaron Mooy having another outstanding game highlighted by an early goal.
Hearts are on course to finish third in the Premier League behind Celtic and Rangers for the second straight season.
But the rift between the Old Firm and the rest only seems to widen as they have been beaten by Ange Postecoglou’s men for the second time in four days.
Celtic have already won the League Cup and are nine points ahead of Rangers in the battle for the league title and have now won 13 straight games in all competitions.
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An early goal from Australia midfielder Aaron Mooy put the Scottish champions on course for the quarter-finals.
Kyogo Furuhashi then increased his tally to 26 for the season with a superb backheel finish following a cross from Alistair Johnston just before half-time.
The visitors eased up after the break but clinched a third goal ten minutes from time when Cameron Carter-Vickers headed in Matt O’Riley’s free-kick.
Australia centre-back Kye Rowles had a tough game for Hearts, while three other Socceroos – Cameron Devlin, Nathaniel Atkinson and Garang Kuol – all came on as substitutes for the beaten club.
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Postecoglou was full of praise for 32-year-old Mooy, who scored his seventh goal of the season.
He told ViaPlay right after the game that Mooy had to work hard to build his fitness after arriving in July and went on to become one of the season’s most consistent players.
“He’s doing well. It’s no secret that, to use colloquialism, he has come up short. He’s been in a paddock for a while, but he’s taken care of himself and worked hard. See I had no doubt that once he got going and he was fit he would play a key role. He was great.”
Speaking to Celtic TV, Postecoglou reiterated his praise: “He’s a good player, he’s a very good player. He’s a key factor for us now.
“It’s as much about his skill as it is about his composure and his knack for not letting circumstances affect him.
“He played at the highest level and you can see that quality.”
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Mooy himself held a revealing press conference after the game, where he reflected on the pressure to perform – and revealed he shares Postecoglou’s way of thinking about feeling relief rather than happiness after a win.
When asked if it was the happiest thing he’s experienced in his playing career, Mooy replied, “I don’t know. Celtic are a demanding club so I’m always under pressure to perform and win when I play. That’s what the fans expect, but it’s fun.
“You can feel everything at this club – the support and the pressure, you can feel everything in football. You can feel everything at Celtic but I enjoy the challenge and I hope it will be a good season.”
He added: “I say, especially with the big games, I feel like the first thing you feel is relief. It’s not joy or happiness. You’re just doing what you’re supposed to do…”
But he added that he has a moment to enjoy his run of success: “I enjoy it when it’s a good game. My coffee, my coffee in the morning tastes better then. Until the games are won, you don’t enjoy them. It’s not that I don’t enjoy it that much when the whistle blows and we won and we did a job then you enjoy it.”
When asked if he would go home and watch the game again, he said with a smile, “I’m not going to watch it again. I’ll probably watch my goal… No, I’ll watch the highlights or something.”
Rangers are the only other top-flight team left in the competition ahead of their quarter-final game against Raith Rovers on Sunday.
Second division side Inverness are in the last four after beating Kilmarnock 2-1 on Friday.
League One Falkirk meets Ayr United of the Championship in the other quarter-finals on Monday.
https://www.foxsports.com.au/football/socceroos/celtic-vs-hearts-scottish-cup-2023-news-scores-results-socceroos-aaron-mooy-goal-ange-postecoglou/news-story/5a40b32c67095bb898e35b1393b9aae0 Celtic vs Hearts, Scottish Cup 2023, News, Scores, Scores, Socceroos, Goal by Aaron Mooy, Ange Postecoglou