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Malky Mackay hails dedication of Lewis-born youngster Matthew Wright following late equaliser for Ross County against Rangers

Ross County striker Matthew Wright celebrates netting against Rangers
Matthew Wright celebrates netting against Rangers.

Ross County manager Malky Mackay says teenager Matthew Wright’s late equaliser against Rangers was reward for his vast travelling commitment as a youth player.

Wright netted his first Staggies five minutes into stoppage time to secure a 3-3 draw against the champions in a thrilling match at Victoria Park.

It was the 19-year-old’s first appearance since returning from a loan spell with Brora Rangers, where he netted 21 goals.

Malky Mackay.

Wright hails from Point on the Isle of Lewis, and has been on the Staggies’ books since the age of 14.

That necessitated multiple ferry crossings to Ullapool every week, with Mackay paying tribute to the striker’s dedication.

Mackay said: “I am really happy for Matthew. A great credit to Steven Ferguson, who is our chief executive at the moment but he has been the manager and he was the academy director for ten years.

“He has brought through a lot of youngsters and anyone knows this part of the world realises the logistical challenges of us having young players.

“Matty and Adam Mackinnon come from Stornoway. It is OK saying that just now. But that is ten years of mum and dad getting on a ferry and then driving another two hours to come here two nights a week and on a Saturday.

“I am delighted for his family as well. He is a boy that scores goals. He was at Brora in the first half of the season and has been the Highland League’s top scorer.

“Him and Adam are here on merit right now and part of the group. He had ten minutes where balls were bouncing off him but I am delighted for him.”

Another of County’s goalscorers, Regan Charles-Cook, is now the Premiership’s leading scorer after taking his tally for the campaign to 10.

The winger is out of contract at the end of the season, which has prompted speculation over his future.

Mackay is relaxed about the prospects of Charles-Cook’s recent form attracting attention from other clubs.

Regan Charles-Cook celebrates netting against Rangers.

He added: “I have got a chairman that is very strong in what he is doing. Regan’s challenge at the start of the season was to go and kick on from a quiet season last year. I believe in him.

“Early on in the season you could see what he had in his game in terms of being wide but what he didn’t have was drifting into the box for second balls.

“Once he started doing that, he has got ten now. We are able to score goals at the moment and he is up there doing that. I am delighted for both wingers because I thought young Joseph Hungbo, right from the off, gave James Tavernier trouble in the right back are and really attacked Rangers.

“He got us up the pitch and into the box and you saw how much of a threat he is when he picks the ball up there. We have two that can be complemented by the group.”

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