Even in a congested midfield, in a Celtic team that struggled against weaker opponents, Scotland star David Turnbull absolutely shone.
In his first Bhoys campaign, he snaffled the Player of the Year and Young Player of the Year honours. So, imagining what he could do under a manager that prides himself on attacking football is legitimately frightening. Turnbull, rightly called up to represent Scotland at Euro 2020, sounds as excited as anyone to get going under the Greek-Australian boss Ange Postecoglou.
David: welcome to the Age of Ange.
Speaking to Celtic’s in-house media, Turnbull reflected a good year (personally), and spoke about the incoming boss. Turnbull said [Celtic FC]:
“I’m looking forward to it. It’s obviously a lift for everyone involved in the club, getting a new manager in, and it’s a fresh start for everybody.
“Last season went well for me and it’s just important to keep that going. It’s been great to get the call-up to the Scotland squad and going to the Euros and I’m fully focused on that at the moment, but once we’re all back with Celtic, we’ll be looking forward to working with the new manager and preparing for the season ahead.
“No matter the circumstances, once you’ve had a break you’re always looking forward to coming back in to work as hard as you can to impress. We’ll have a new manager so we’re all looking forward to meeting him and working with him.”
The prospect of Celtic star David Turnbull going up a gear under Ange Postecoglou is beyond exciting
Call us Ange Acolytes if you will. The Postecoglou Posse. Some other, less embarrassing name. But everything said about, and by the new Celtic boss is cause for optimism.
After all, this is a guy who revolutionised football in Australia. His gung-ho, attacking approach will surely yield exciting opportunities for players like Turnbull. It felt like the ex-Motherwell man was playing with his arms tied behind his back under Lennon and Kennedy. That surely won’t be the case under Big Ange.
In just 35 games for Celtic, Turnbull has contributed directly to 17 goals [Transfermarkt]. Even when his passes don’t provide goals, he’s getting players into the positions to score. Say what you like about ‘key passes’ as a stat, but outranking Lionel Messi at anything (other than height) is something to celebrate.
Surely, then, Postecoglou will build his team around Celtic’s Player of the Year. A player who isn’t only comfortable as a number 10, Turnbull can start deeper and drift into the half-spaces, dragging defenders out of position and carving the opposition open.
That’s an asset, and while a Tom Rogic revival garners more headlines, it’s well worth getting excited about what Turnbull can do for Postecoglou.