Alex McLeish has backed Celtic manager Neil Lennon to “unleash” David Turnbull in the first Old Firm derby of the season later this month. 

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, the former Rangers boss admitted that he has been impressed with the 21-year-old in recent weeks.

The Hoops are set to be without key creative talent Ryan Christie for the clash at Parkhead on October 17th after the Scotland international came into contact with Southampton midfielder Stuart Armstrong during his time away on international duty.

Armstrong returned a positive Covid-19 test earlier this week, meaning that Christie will be forced to undergo a 14-day period of isolation beginning last Tuesday.

But while McLeish has claimed that Tom Rogic is also an option to step in for the absent 25-year-old, he believes that Turnbull is the man for the job.

Speaking to Football Insider, he said: “Rogic has been outstanding in these big games, but he has been out of the picture for a while.

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“I really feel that Neil Lennon may unleash Turnbull.

“He’s another who, in recent weeks, he has upped his game. He looks very, very confident.

“Going into the big Old Firm derby is another step up, but it would be a surprise for me if Rogic starts.”

Turnbull signed for Celtic from Motherwell this summer in a deal worth an initial £2.75 million, as revealed by Football Insider.

Since then, he has made four appearances for his new club, including his first start against St Johnstone last weekend.

In other Celtic news, Frank McAvennie reveals one player has been doing extra training ahead of Rangers clash.