Celtic winger Scott Sinclair has insisted he always believed he would be back at the heart of the Parkhead side. The 29-year-old has returned to prominence after coming off the bench as Celtic beat Hearts at Murrayfield in the League Cup semi-final in October. Sinclair was Celtic's top scorer last term but struggled to make the same kind of impact that he did in his inaugural season at the club but having started the last five games, he has maintained that he never had any doubts about his future with the Parkhead side.

"I just had to bide my time, I knew I'd get another chance to get back in the team," said the Englishman.

"Now I'm back in, it's up to me to keep performing, which I think I have done. It's a phase when you have to dig deep, it shows your mental strength.

"It's a period I've been through a hell of a lot, I just grind in and give 100 per cent until my time comes to get back on the pitch.

"I've always had a fight on my hands since I came here.

"I'm never complacent, I have to keep going and make sure I stay in the team."

Sinclair was linked with a move back down south, something he has insisted was never on the cards."That never entered my head, I love being here," he added.

"It was the best season ever for me when I first arrived and the second season was just as good.

"Just because I went through a sticky patch, I'm not all of a sudden wanting to leave because I didn't play in a couple of games.

"I'm back in the team and looking forward to another final on Sunday at Hampden."