CALLUM PATERSON labelled his overhead kick for Scotland Under-21s last night as the finest goal of his fledgling career and even better than his match-winning header for Hearts against Hibs.
The 19-year-old produced a stunning acrobatic effort for the equaliser six minutes from the end of the 1-1 draw with Georgia at St Mirren Park. The goal was his first at under-21 level and kept Scotland’s hopes of reaching the European Under-21 Championship alive.
Paterson headed Hearts’ goal in the 1-0 Edinburgh derby win at Tynecastle in August, but he insisted the overhead finish from Kenny McLean’s free-kick eclipses that moment.
“That goal and the one against Hibs are my two best goals but that one’s got to top it. It’s my first goal for Scotland Under-21s, so it’s something special. It means a lot to me,” he explained.
“The gaffer put his faith in me and I came on and did the business for him. I’m delighted with the finish but we would rather have had three points.”
Paterson admitted even he was surprised to turn and see the ball in the net after taking to the air to connect with McLean’s set-piece. “There was nobody marking me at the free-kick and I thought, ‘I’m going to have to do something here’. I just chucked a big boot up there and hoped for the best, and the ball went in,” he laughed.
“I couldn’t believe it, really. I was like, ‘what am I going to do now?’ I just felt really happy.”