Former Scotland boss admits Chelsea FC youngster has been impressing him

Alex McLeish says it won't be long before Chelsea FC youngster Billy Gilmour makes his full Scotland debut

Frank Lampard
Frank Lampard (Photo: The Sport Review)

Former Scotland manager Alex McLeish believes that it won’t be long before Chelsea FC starlet Billy Gilmour is called up for his full international debut.

The 18-year-old midfielder has been earning rave reviews for his recent performances in the middle of the park for the Blues after having been put into the first team by Frank Lampard at Stamford Bridge.

Gilmour was named as the man of the match as he helped Chelsea FC to claim a 2-0 win over Liverpool FC in the FA Cup fifth round at Stamford Bridge and he followed up that performance with another fine display in the 4-0 win over Everton.

The teenager has only represented Scotland at Under-21 level as things stand, but former boss McLeish feels that it is only a matter of time before Gilmour makes his full international debut.

Speaking in an interview with the Daily Mail, McLeish said: “I think a lot of us have said before that if you are good enough you are old enough.

“Billy has had two man of the match awards against top teams. But no way am I going to interfere with Steve’s selection for Israel or tell him who to pick. He has his own thoughts on it and maybe has a strategy in his head.

“After winning the last three Steve might not want to disturb the momentum by bringing in unfamiliar players. He probably won’t want to rush Billy.

“Let’s be honest, there is a glut of midfield players for the Scottish manager to pick from and a lot of them are at a good level doing well.

“But there’s no question Gilmour has really caught the eye.

“I was speaking to the guys within the SFA over the last couple of years and everybody has tipped the boy for the top.

“It’s early days for him. These are two massive games and international football is very different.

“He is playing in what is probably the top league in the world, but can he go right into the Scotland team? Stevie is the only man who can decide that.”

Chelsea FC are currently in fourth place in the Premier League table as they seek Champions League qualification in Lampard’s first full season in charge.

As things stand, the Blues are scheduled to return to top-flight action on 5 April when they travel to West Ham United in the Premier League, after the season was put on hold amid the coronavirus outbreak.

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