Aaron Mooy believes that his two year stint with St Mirren was the making of him as a professional.
The young midfielder made 30 appearances for Danny Lennon’s side as they scrapped against relegation with Paul McGowan, Kenny McLean and Jm Goodwin among his team-mates.
Returning to Australia could have been the end of the European dream but a move to Melbourne City brought him under the City Football Group leading to moves to Huddersfield, Brighton and on to Celtic via Shanghai Port.
Harry Kewell and Ange Postecoglou will provide a couple of familiar faces for the new bhoy as he sets out to make inroads towards a first team place but a spell along the M8 in Paisley set him on the path that could lead to the Champions League and World Cup Finals before Christmas.
Reflecting on his introduction to Scottish football, Mooy told the Daily Record:
It was a good experience at St Mirren. It exposed me to what it is like in professional football.
When you play reserve football, it’s not like you can go down or be relegated. That exposed me to that. It was a big eye-opener. Obviously I wasn’t that successful there but I think I’ve improved my mental side of the game, which is very important.
Maybe then I was a little weak mentally and not resilient enough. Impatient, I’d probably say. These things you learn as you grow as a person and a footballer.
It was always the plan for me to come back. That was my dream as a kid – to play in Europe, play at the highest level I could.
Obviously a few years go by in Australia and you think ‘am I going to get the chance?’ I was lucky enough to get another opportunity and I’m proud I got to play at a good level in the Premier League
Mooy made his Celtic debut in the 2-0 friendly win over Norwich and is expected to be involved in Sunday’s match against Aberdeen.