STEVE CLARKE has to include David Turnbull in the Scotland squad for the European Championships next summer, according to the man who oversaw his development as a youth player at Motherwell.
Gordon Young, now assistant manager to Paul Hartley at Cove Rangers, thinks that in-form Turnbull is a certainty to be handed a place in Clarke’s 23-man squad for the nation’s first major tournament in over two decades, despite not currently having a senior cap to his name.
And while Young acknowledges that Scotland’s midfield is the strongest area of the team, he feels that Turnbull offers a different option than those who have been in and around Clarke’s squad.
“I think he’s a shoo-in for the Euros,” Young said. “It’s an area of the park where we’ve got really good players, but at the same time, I think David is different to the other midfield players we’ve got.
“He’s certainly different to what Celtic have got based on the attributes he has.
“He has the ability to shoot from distance, his delivery of the ball is very good, and his all-round awareness of the game is just a credit to his football knowledge.”
Turnbull has just five caps at under-21 level for his country, and while Young says that he hasn’t always caught the eye of the coaches at the SFA, he has no doubts he would flourish under Clarke’s guidance.
“I can remember a situation years ago with Mark Wotte where I was championing David for the Scotland set-up, and he wasn’t having him really,” he said. “He didn’t fit into the Dutch numbering system.
“To the untrained eye, you would maybe think that David isn’t the quickest player because he doesn’t sprint about the park, but he is one of those players that you would say has another yard in his head.
“He finds positions to get on the ball, and his biggest attribute in my opinion is that when he unloads the ball, he’s off. That makes it difficult to pick him up, and when he goes, he has the wherewithal to always seems to know where the ball is going, and that is something that isn’t coached.
“He’d be a great asset for Scotland.”