Scholar Findlay's amazing week

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Stuart Findlay Celtic newsFootball scholar Stuart Findlay won’t forget last week in a hurry.

The 16-year-old started the week sitting his maths higher, made his Celtic debut on the Tuesday and ended it with the Scotland u-20 squad in Holland!

Findlay captained Celtic’s u-17 side last season and stepped up to the u-19 side with ease impressing in the two wins over Manchester City in the Next Gen Series.

After featuring in the Glasgow Cup and SFA Youth Cup finals he thought that it was time to concentrate on his studies but Neil Lennon had other ideas.

With half a dozen internationalists missing Findlay and u-17 pals Jamie Lindsay, Lewis Kidd and Denny Johnstone found themselves promoted to the first team squad that faced Norwich in the Adam Drury testimonial.

Before he travelled to Carrow Road there was the small matter of higher maths to negotiate but the Carmyle bhoy took both tests in his stride.

“On the Thursday before I played a under-18s game against Airdrie and I thought that was my season finished,” Findlay told The Sun.

“But that night I got told by Chris McCart I was going to be in the first-team squad for Norwich. It was mind-blowing for me. Even better, to then be later told by Neil Lennon that I was staring was the stuff of dreams.

“I was one of five youngsters who travelled and the boss said that there was no pressure on us, that he saw us as firstteam players for the night and just to go out and prove what we could do.

“He then took me aside before kick-off and told me what to expect from the Norwich strikers. The boss said he believed in me and that was a big confidence booster.

“Kelvin Wilson was beside me in defence. When he’d joined the club last summer I was delighted because he’s a top defender. But at 16 I never thought I’d end up playing alongside him this season.

“Kelvin was a massive help for me, he talked me through it and kept me right.

“Norwich had James Vaughan and Grant Holt up front and it was a real eye-opener for me. Their movement and touch was top class. I learned so much from playing the 90 minutes.”

Findlay added: “The whole experience, though, gave me a taste of what it could be like to be a Celtic first-team player. It was a great feeling and I want more and more of it.

“After the Norwich game I got a text from Tommy McIntyre to say I’d been called up for the Scotland Under-20 squad. It was yet more great news but I’m also keen to make sure I get my qualifications.

“I sat my English Higher the Thursday before during the day, played the game at night, then it was my maths on Monday ahead of going to Norwich.

“I’ve been full-time at Celtic since last summer but my education and football have always been linked because I came through the club’s St Ninians’ project in Kirkintilloch.

“It’s been hard trying to fit in two Highers with my football commitments but I feel it’s worthwhile.”

CLICK HERE for Duff and Phelps dismiss Green’s HMRC ‘nod’

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