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Celtic midfielder leads Messi and Manchester United star in elite passing table

In an otherwise calamitous season for Celtic, David Turnbull has been a major positive.

After fighting back from a serious injury to finally complete his Celtic move, he struggled to find his way into the side during the campaign’s first few months.

Having finally been given his chance in December, the midfielder went on to become one of the first names on the teamsheet.

With a record of seven in 27 matches, the 21-year-old has shown he’s capable of chipping in with goals.

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It’s his knack for providing ‘key passes’, however, that has seen him overtake the likes of Lionel Messi and Thomas Muller in a table of elite passers.

Whoscored.com used data from Opta to compile a list of those players who have completed the most key passes in top-tier leagues.

Ajax’s Dusan Tadic tops the list with 107, followed by Xavier Mercier of Belgian side OH Leuven with 97.

Turnbull is third with 91, a figure made even more impressive when you consider his relative lack of match action in the first four months of the season.

That figure is four ahead of Manchester United’s Bruno Fernandes, 13 more than that of Bayern star Muller and 26 greater than Barca icon Messi’s tally.

Turnbull was a surprise omission from Steve Clarke’s latest squad.

Speaking to Sky Sports upon confirmation of the squad, Clarke said: “Good player, David, done well this year to break into the Celtic team.

“He looks a good prospect for us. Unfortunately for David, he is trying to get into what is probably the strongest area of the pitch.

“I’m sure if David keeps up his current form, his chance won’t be too far away.”

Turnbull is likely to be a key man for Celtic on Sunday, when they take on Rangers in the fourth round of the Scottish Cup at Ibrox.

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