BBC pundit, Alan Shearer, waxed lyrical about former Rangers wonderkid Billy Gilmour on Tuesday night, after his ‘absolutely magnificent’ performance for Chelsea in an FA Cup win over Liverpool, as quoted by BBC.co.uk.
The 18-year-old midfielder left the Gers to head to London in 2017, with the Blues forking out a £500,000 fee [talkSPORT].
It was deemed a shame that such a fine talent had left Ibrox, particularly because he had joined Chelsea, a club renowned for youth team success, but not for giving Academy players opportunities in the first team.
However, a combination of a summer transfer ban and the arrival of Frank Lampard as manager has seen a shift of emphasis, with young talent receiving more chances.
With just five first-team appearances under his belt, Gilmour was included in the starting XI against Liverpool, the current Club World Champions, in a Fifth Round FA Cup tie.
Not only did he hold his own, but he stole the show.
A goal in each half for the hosts, courtesy of Willian and Ross Barkley, secured progression, but Gilmour controlled proceedings in midfield and he certainly impressed former England striker Shearer.
“He has bossed it,” he said, as quoted by BBC.co.uk. “He’s done whatever he’s been asked to do, whether that’s collecting the ball and passing it forward, protecting that back four, spraying the ball around, he’s been absolutely magnificent.”
“He passed it forward – that was his first thought. Jorginho is now suspended for the next couple of games, so he’s put in a performance that’s said to the manager ‘you have to keep me in this team’.
“Everything he has done has been spot on. He is so confident, to have that belief in his ability.”
It’s extremely high praise from a pundit who has all sorts of Premier League records to his name and it appears that after some promising signs earlier in the season, Gilmour has now really arrived as a top-level player.
He walked away with the Man of the Match award on the night, and as Shearer mentioned, it’s going to be very hard to take him out of the side for Sunday’s league clash against Everton.
Great team performance and proud to receive the man of the match award tonight. On to the quarters 💪🏼💙 pic.twitter.com/RnVYDXWUGO
— Billy Gilmour (@billygilmourrr) March 3, 2020
You’d be hard-pressed to find a Gers fan who resents the teenager for leaving now and many praised him on social media, recognising that he has a very bright future ahead of him.