Elyounoussi dismisses Sky question on phone-gate after stunning Celtic hat-trick vs Motherwell

By David Walton

November 8, 2020

Mohamed Elyounoussi had to answer yet another question this afternoon on phone-gate as Sky Sports tried to probe him on the incident.

Elyounoussi, on loan at Celtic from Southampton, was the star of the show today with a terrific hat-trick at Fir Park. The 4-1 routing of Motherwell was more than welcome after a week in which the club and Moi individually were criticised.

After a shocking 4-1 home loss to Sparta Prague, Elyounoussi was lambasted by BT pundits for looking at his phone during the closing stages despite having been subbed off. It’s dominated the headlines over the last few days, and clearly led to Moi feeling that he had something to prove this afternoon.

And after bagging three more vital goals for the cause today, the Celtic winger wasn’t interested as he was asked about the incident once again by Sky Sports.

Speaking when interviewed on Sky Sports’ live coverage of Motherwell vs Celtic (Sky Sports Main Event, 08/11, 14:00), Elyounoussi said: “I mean I’ve already answered that!

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“It was a misunderstanding. I let my feet do the talking and this is the best way to respond to that. So, in the end, I just focused on the game, my team-mates and the club obviously.

“That’s the good thing about football – there are always new games. We wanted to show a different side of ourselves and I think we did that today. It was a great win and it’s all about the three points.”

Time to move on as Elyounoussi’s influence grows

Had Celtic beaten Prague, you wouldn’t even have heard anything about this ridiculous saga. But there’s also no denying that Moi’s hat-trick today will make it easier for anyone angry with him to move on.

The idea of questioning a player’s commitment to the team because he got his phone out to check another score is simply one almighty leap. It’s easy to point fingers after a night like Thursday, but in truth it has no relevance. Elyounoussi was poor against Sparta just like many others. That’s football. You can’t then just say because he whipped a phone out that he wasn’t interested.

Today’s performance from him as an individual was sensational. It’s going to finally put an end to this ludicrous story, and you could tell how much it doesn’t bother Neil Lennon either if their full-time embrace was anything to go by.

Mohamed Elyounoussi celebrates for Celtic at Fir Park (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

Elyounoussi proved his commitment this afternoon. We needed characters to step up and claim us the points at Fir Park today and Moi has done just that. It would’ve been so much easier for him to go into his shell and only do the simple things, but instead he put himself out there.

Now, we move onto another international break where we can finally take a breather and calm down. Elyounoussi’s safe return from international duty with Norway will be in many Celtic supporters’ prayers – as will all of our players’ returns from competing with their countries.

But the media spotlight on Moi will be nothing less than extremely positive after a huge performance from him in North Lanarkshire this afternoon.

In other news, the Celtic supporters were wowed by a player who had previously been written off under Lennon.