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'Unbelievable ability': Celtic star compared to Champions League final hero by former boss

While Celtic have endured a calamitous season, it has not been entirely devoid of positives.

The emergence of David Turnbull as one of the first names on the team-sheet gives fans hope that the future might not be as bleak as the last few months have been.

Fans had been clamouring for the midfielder to be included for some time before he was handed his opportunity at the tail end of 2020, and he grabbed his opportunity in style with a goal in the 3-2 Europa League win over Lille at Celtic Park.

Since then, the 21-year-old has not looked back.

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Having overcome a significant injury that delayed his move from Motherwell in the summer of 2019, he’s now an integral part of interim boss John Kennedy’s side and looks set to be at the heart of Celtic’s midfield for some time to come.

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Stephen Robinson, who managed Turnbull at Fir Park, says he’s only worked with two players who possess the same composure on the ball as Turnbull.

The Northern Irishman played alongside 1999 Champions League final goalscorer Teddy Sheringham at Tottenham and coached Rangers midfielder Steven Davis with Northern Ireland’s national team, and he told Record Sport that Turnbull has earned comparisons with that pair.

He said: “David has this unbelievable ability to look as if he’s always got time on the ball.

“There are only two other players I’ve ever come across who have that – Davis and Sheringham.

“Obviously, Teddy played in a different position but all three just have so much composure. They’re never rushed on the ball.

“When I watched David in the Motherwell youth team then when he stepped up to first-team level, eventually people just wouldn’t go near him.

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“And I’m seeing that now when he’s playing for Celtic.

“Players step off him on the pitch, giving him even more time – because he just doesn’t give the ball away.

“I had no doubt that once he got into the Celtic team he would really affect games for them. His delivery from set-plays has also been excellent. He’s a top footballer who can keep progressing.

“Whoever comes in as manager, David will have a big part to play in that team.

“He’s been their one shining light to come out of a season when Celtic haven’t achieved what they wanted.

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“David’s been the one player who has performed consistently well since coming into the team.

“It took him a long time to get in, for whatever reason. But now, in terms of talent and creativity, he’s been excellent for them.”

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