Celtic’s chances of regaining the Premiership crown took a boost on Thursday evening when they narrowed the gap at the top of the table thanks to a Kyogo Furuhashi goal for the Hoops.
It wasn’t a perfect night for Ange Postecoglou’s men as the Bhoys struggled to put the ball in the back of the net at Parkhead.
However, as seems to be customary this term, Kyogo was the hero as Celtic beat Hearts 1-0.
There were a number of standout performers and it will come as a great relief that two of the finest displays came from Postecoglou’s returning players; Tom Rogic and Carl Starfelt.
The former was at his creative best, adding an extra layer of sparkle to Celtic’s central areas that had been missing for several weeks. As for Starfelt, he was a colossal presence at the back, winning seven defensive duels and completing a whopping 91% of his passes.
However, it wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows for the club. On a night where Rogic showed his true colours in the middle of the park, David Turnbull proved that he’s expendable to the team.
It has been a puzzling campaign for the Scot who has shown flashes of brilliance at times but has struggled for consistency.
He has been involved in 13 goals this term – a handy amount – but there is a sense that the 22-year-old needs to kick on more. After all, Turnbull now hasn’t found the back of the net in the Premiership for six matches.
This performance exacerbated his current troubles, with the attacking midfielder failing to assert himself on proceedings. Per SofaScore, he took six shots towards goal but none of them were on target, as he found defenders closing him down quickly on a regular basis.
Furthermore, Turnbull won just three of the seven physical battles he contested and also lost possession on 21 occasions. For context, he has lost the ball on average 15.6 times per match this term, which goes to show just how off the pace he was against Hearts on Thursday night.
He did provide six key passes, an eye-catching number, but ultimately the Scotland international wasn’t at his best in a number of key facets.
With Rogic returning, there is now competition again in the middle of the park and with the impressive Nir Bitton relegated to the bench on this occasion, it wouldn’t be a great surprise if he was brought back in at the expense of Turnbull this weekend. It’s time to get rid of him from the starting XI.