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Crossroads- Sutton’s verdict on Celtic’s August 2020 signing

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Chris Sutton believes that David Turnbull’s Celtic career is at a cross-roads. 

During the first half of the season the former Motherwell midfielder was almost as important to Ange Postecoglou as captain Callum McGregor, it was almost those two plus A N Other to fill the midfield. 

A hamstring injury during the first half of the League Cup Final on December 19 did more than just bring Turnbull’s season to a halt, within a fortnight Postecoglou brought in two midfielders from Japan with Matt O’Riley added later on during the January transfer window. 

When Turnbull resumed fitness he spent a month on the bench before starting the games against Hearts and Motherwell in the final week of the season. 

The Motherwell match was the end of the road for Tom Rogic and Nir Bitton but by the time next season starts Reo Hatate, Yosuke Ideguchi and Matt O’Riley will all be battling for places alongside McGregor. 

Looking at Turnbull’s situation, Sutton explains to Daily Record readers: 

The Scotland international played a huge part in the first-half of last term when the likes of O’Riley and Hatate were at other clubs. He carried a burden and delivered. 

Turnbull paid the price for a heavy schedule when suffering injury in the Premier Sports Cup Final and that allowed O’Riley and Hatate to jump above him in the pecking order when he was working his way through his rehabilitation. 

Turnbull scored against Motherwell last weekend to offer a reminder of what he can do and, of course, Postecoglou needs a big squad to cope with the demands of another full fixture lost including Champions League next season. 

McGregor starts. Full stop. Every game, if he is fit. That leaves two midfield places up for grabs in the manager’s current system and, to my eye, they are owned at this minute by O’Riley and Hatate and that is even before the market opens. 

I have little doubt that Postecoglou will go into this window with another midfielder on his radar. In fact, I’m almost sure of it. 

Celtic’s demanding fixture list before the World Cup break in November will require squad depth but Turnbull and everyone else will want to be a first pick with six Champions League group matches coming up. 

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  • Frankie says:

    Chris less negative talk the lad has come through injury and no need for this type of talk about him.

  • Scud Missile says:

    When I seen the word crossroads in this headline a thought big Chris was on about a BENNY.

  • Sean McGinley says:

    Looks like a constructive comment to me. Its all part of managers methods , to create competition in every area and have players never stop.

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