Former Celtic boss Davie Hay has came to the defence of Hoops attacker Scott Sinclair.

Sinclair, who is the Hoops’ top scorer this season with 17 goals, has came under criticism from supporters as his performances have failed to match the standards of last season, when he was named Scotland’s player of the year and was the Bhoys’ star man.

However, writing in his column in the Evening Times, Hay feels that issues off the pitch may be affecting the 29-year-old and that he deserves some slack from fans.

“I have to say that I don’t quite subscribe to the theory that it has been a poor season for Scott Sinclair,” Hay said.

“With 17 goals to his name, I think you have to see the bigger picture

“He has had a fair bit of hassle off the pitch and you just wonder if that may feature in his thinking, assuming that he has a decision to make for him and his family this summer.”

Sinclair has been on the bench for the Hoops in recent weeks, and it will be interesting to see if he returns to the starting line-up against bottom of the league Ross County on Saturday.

Football Insider verdict

Sinclair has been poor at times for the Hoops this season, but if he is able to rediscover his form then he can still be a very important player for the Hoops for the rest of the season. On his day he is still the best player in Scottish football, but those days have been few and far between in recent months. As for the future, only the player himself will know if family issues will force him to depart at the end of the season, but there’s no doubt that Hoops boss Brendan Rodgers would like to keep him at the club for as long as possible.

In other Celtic news, Chris Sutton wants the Hoops to sign John McGinn

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