Gilmour makes the right impression on Campbell

Billy Gilmour had tasted just six minutes of Premier League action but Allan Campbell says the Chelsea starlet is already a shining example to the rest of the Scotland Under-21s squad.

Frank Lampard handed former Rangers youngster Gilmour his first-team debut in last week’s clash with Sheffield United at Stamford Bridge.

The occasion was soured for the 18-year-old as Kurt Zouma’s last-minute own goal handed the Blades a 2-2 draw.

But for Motherwell midfielder Campbell, Gilmour’s introduction to the star-studded Blues line-up is proof that age is no barrier to those who can combine talent with dedication.

“He’s a great wee player,” said Campbell, who partnered Gilmour at the heart of Scot Gemmill’s midfield for Thursday’s 2-0 win over San Marino in Paisley.

“I’ve known Billy for a couple of years now as he’s been in a few of the camps.

“It’s great to get the chance to play with him and I was obviously buzzing for him when he came on for Chelsea last weekend. Hopefully he can keep shining and kicking on.

“He’s like any other boy. He’s humble off the park but when he goes out there, he always shows his talent.

“In training he works hard but you can see the ability he has a mile off. He’s always doing tricks and some of the stuff he does is brilliant.

“I’m glad he’s getting the opportunity with his club to play at such a high level.

“I know a lot of the boys here look at him and think if he’s getting a chance at first-team level then we can do the same if we keep our heads down and work hard.”

Gilmour was at the heart of everything good Scotland did as they kicked off their Euro 2021 qualifying bid with a straightforward win over the Group Four minnows.

And he will have to be at his best again as the youngsters prepare for a tougher task away to Croatia on Tuesday night.

With the likes of Ross McCrorie, Lewis Ferguson and Glenn Middleton for team-mates, Campbell is convinced Scotland are firmly in the running to reach their first major tournament since 1996.

He said: “Thursday night was a massive test as it can be hard to play against a team that sit back and look to be compact. You have to make sure you win the game and we did that.

“Now we know Croatia are going to be a wee bit different in how they approach it but I’m sure Scot will have his tactics spot-on and we’ll have a plan to exploit them.

“When you look about the boys in our changing room it makes you think, ‘we’ve got a chance here’.

“We have a good group of talented boys and we have got every right to believe we can get out of this group.”

Read Full Story

FROM OUR PARTNERS