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DEADLINE HEADLINES 2: ‘I DIDN’T LIKE IT,’ WHAT HOOPS STAR THOUGHT OF RODGERS DECISION, £20m SCOT WAITS FOR GO-AHEAD, MAY’S WAITING GAME, SAINTS SWOOP

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CRAIG GORDON has admitted he “didn’t like” Brendan Rodgers’ explanation when he left the keeper out of the team after the turn of the year.

The 36-year-old goalkeeper was axed following the 1-0 loss to Rangers at Ibrox in the last game in December although most onlookers reckoned he was the team’s best player in a poor performance from the champions.

Rodgers introduced Scott Bain for the Scottish Cup-tie against Airdrie at Parkhead on January 19 and he had a shut-out in the 3-0 victory. The former Dundee shotstopper, who had just agreed a permanent deal the previous summer, kept the No.1 position for the remaining 24 games as the Hoops made history by completing the treble treble.

There was also an international call-up for the last line of defence who conceded 10 goals in 2019.

Gordon’s battle to regain the gloves wasn’t helped when he sustained a knee injury, but he is now looking forward to this campaign after making his first appearance in the top side this year during the 2-0 win over Nomme Kalju in Estonia on Tuesday in the Champions League qualifier.

The former £9million Sunderland star, speaking to the Evening Times, said: “Being out for the length of time I was out was tough. To be out of the team, whether it was the manager’s choice, or you’re injured, it’s difficult to find the strength to come back again and show what you’re made of.

“It’s been a challenge, I’m not going to lie. But finally, I’m in a position now where I can start to compete again and give my best on the pitch when I’m chosen to play.

“I just want to play as many games as I can.”

Looking back on the former Hoops boss’ decision to make a change, Gordon added: “[Rodgers] first of all wanted to try Scott in a run of games. It was something he’d never done, it was always the odd Cup game here and there. It was never back-to-back games and he felt he wanted to do that.

“He spoke to me during the winter break and said he was going to give him four of five games to look at what his options were in terms of goalkeepers.

“I don’t think Scott lost a goal in the first few games and went from strength to strength.

“After a month or so, the manager came back to me and said he didn’t want to change it because the team was playing really well. So, that was that.

“So, it was explained to me. I didn’t like it, but that’s football.

“Scott did really well, so what I did then was try and work really hard to get back.”

OLI McBURNIE, Scotland international striker, is expected to complete his £20million switch from Swansea to Sheffield United this evening, as Scotzine reported yesterday.

Both clubs have agreed a fee of £17million which will rise to £20million and the 23-year-old frontman is due to undergo a medial this evening, according to Sky Sports News.

The move will break the newly-promoted Premier League side’s transfer record for a fourth time this window.

McBurnie, 23, scored 22 goals in 42 Championship appearances last term.

STEVIE MAY is back training at Aberdeen as he ponders his future following the collapse of his expected move to former team St Johnstone.

Dons boss Derek McInnes said the striker, who cost the Pittodrie club £400,000 when he joined from Preston two years ago, will be involved in the first team and it was now up to the player and his agent to sort out his next move.

Dundee, Kilmarnock, St Mirren and Ross County have all been linked with the player, but Dundee United have dropped their interest.

SAM FOLEY has quit Northampton Town to join St Mirren on a two-year deal, subject to international clearance.

The 32-year-old midfielder has moved from the English League Two club to become new gaffer Jim Goodwin’s second signing in 48 hours following the capture of winger Ilkay Durmus.

The Paisley boss, speaking on the club website, said: “Sam is a good, experienced, central midfielder. He can play on the left and the right of midfield, but I’m bringing him in to be a central midfielder.

“He gives us a bit of aggression, a bit of experience, has good energy and fitness levels and is a very tidy footballer.”

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Editor

Acclaimed author Alex Gordon wrote the biography of Scotland international legend Denis Law, entitled 'King and Country'. He is a former columnist with World Soccer magazine and Scottish correspondent of respected European journal L'Equipe.

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