Greg Taylor insists his faith in his ability never wavered during his time on Celtic’s sidelines.
Signed from Kilmarnock for £2 million in a summer deadline-day transfer, the 22-year-old had to wait eight weeks to make his debut.
A series of niggling injuries gave Boli Bolingoli and Jonny Hayes – Taylor’s rivals for the left-back spot – the opportunity to stake their claims, and they took full advantage.
Quizzed on Taylor’s absence, Neil Lennon spoke of the need for the Scotland internationalist to improve the attacking side of his game.
It is testimony to his response that with spring approaching, the manager now views him as his No. 1 choice in the position.
“There were adjustments to make, a process I had to learn.
“I am talking in terms of building up patterns of play and getting used to having more of the ball,” said Taylor.
“It was the attacking side I needed to work on. I hadn’t had as many opportunities to push forward at Kilmarnock.
“At Celtic, you’ve got a lot more of the ball, so it’s important. Thankfully, we’re scoring lots of goals.
“You’re higher up, especially in a 3-5-2. You are a wing-back so it’s a shift. But it is one I am enjoying.
“Everyone wants to be playing but, equally, it’s very rare for someone to walk into a Celtic team.
“So I was doing wee bits here and there with John Kennedy and Damien Duff on the pitch.
“They’ve been really good with helping me improve. They are two fantastic coaches and it’s good to work with them.
“I wouldn’t say I was worried when I wasn’t playing. You’ve got to have full belief in yourself
“I wanted to become a Celtic regular when I signed. I always had confidence in myself that the opportunity would come and, when it did, that I would take it.
As the Greenock-born defender admits, though, winning a place in the team is only half the battle.
“It’s hard getting here, but it’s even harder becoming a regular in the team,” said Taylor.
“There is competition for every position here.
“For me, it is maybe coming from Boli and Jonny, but everyone has people trying to push each other on.
“So it’s important to try to perform when you’ve got the shirt. At a club this size, you’ve got to be doing it week in, week out, otherwise that will change quickly.
“It’s a great group of players. I can only do what I can do.
“Potentially, this could be a huge few months coming up for me – with both Celtic and Scotland.
“The key word, though, is could! In football no one owes anyone anything.”
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