When Scott Robertson made his Celtic debut all the way back in 2019, it looked as though it would be the first taste of a glittering career at Parkhead.
However, in classic circumstances, Robertson has only had one bite of the cherry in the senior team and hasn’t been deemed good enough yet for a proper breakthrough.
The list is countless, especially in recent years. Neil Lennon didn’t hand sufficient chances to the likes of Karamoko Dembele, Cameron Harper or Luca Connell either.
Harper has left and Dembele’s contract expires next summer with an extension still unlikely.
Connell did at least enjoy a loan spell at Queen’s Park last term where he helped them achieve promotion but Robertson is another to benefit from the loan system.
He spent last season at Gillingham and has now moved to Crewe in League One.
His first performance was wonderful as he shone in the middle of the park for David Artell’s team.
On top of that, the 20-year-old was fouled five times as Crewe’s opponents struggled to contain his dynamism.
It’s not entirely how the midfielder would have expected his career to go after making his debut against Cluj in the Europa League two years ago.
However, there is no shame in being loaned out to the third tier of English football; just ask current club captain Callum McGregor.
He spent a year with Notts County in 2013/14 and has since gone on to become a stalwart of the Hoops team.
What’s so vital to McGregor’s tale is that he plays in a very similar way to Robertson.
They are not afraid of the physical side of the game and they are also both immensely creative. Speaking about his own game last year, the academy graduate commented: “I like being the deepest in midfield getting on the ball and dictating the game.
“But I’ve got no problem going a bit further forward as a No 8 rather than a No 6, because I think I’m not bad when I get closer to the goal as well.”
The number 6 role has become synonymous with McGregor at Paradise. He wins turnovers, dictates the game and then acts as the supply line for the exciting forward players at Ange Postecoglou’s disposal.
Pivotally, he also looks a player above his age bracket. Gills boss, Steve Evans, said during the youngster’s loan spell: “He is a player. He is a kid in a man’s body and I am pleased we got him. I am not going to build him up to what he is not; he is a young player who has come from a great club and he has got great potential.”
Adding to that, a Celtic source told The Athletic: “His technical ability and tactical side of the game are already there, and he’s developed a lot physically over the last few years.”
There are plenty of parallels between him and McGregor. They’ve spent time in England but importantly, their game is similar.
Of course, McGregor is now a fully-fledged international so Robertson has plenty to live up to.
First and foremost, he must make an impression on Postecoglou and earn another chance in the first team.