Aidan Nesbitt believes his season on loan with Morton has been brilliant for his development and urged any players who might be offered a similar stint at Cappielow to jump at the opportunity.
Ton boss Jim Duffy managed to secure the highly regarded Celtic winger’s services last summer, initially on a development loan until 4 January before extending his stay until the end of the campaign.
The 20-year-old forward feels he reaped the rewards from a year in which he was afforded an invaluable opportunity to play regular first-team football.
Nesbitt made 28 starts and nine substitute appearances over the season and won his first two Scotland Under-21 caps in that time, and was yesterday named in the Under-20 squad for the upcoming Toulon Tournament.
The forward feels he reaped the rewards from an invaluable opportunity to play regular first-team football and recommends anyone approached by Duffy to take the chance to sign on at Sinclair Street.
Speaking exclusively to gmfc.net, he said: “Personally I think I had a decent season. I played over 30 games overall and it’s been brilliant for me.
“If you compare some of my performances at the start of the season to the end, I reckon I’ve come on quite a lot. I definitely think I’m going back into Celtic for pre-season at a better stage than when I left.
“That’s what loans are for, and I’m happy I can say that. Obviously the gaffer has helped me a lot, Jim Duffy always wanted me to be positive, and I can only thank him for helping me this season.
“It’s a good place to go and learn. From my experience at Morton I’ve really enjoyed it and based on that it’s certainly the first place I’d recommend anybody to go if they were looking for the kind of loan I had.”
According to Nesbitt, it was a campaign filled with highs and he reflected on some of his favourite memories and the spirit engendered by a tightly-knit squad.
He added: “Especially in the middle of the season when we were winning every week and we got to the semi-final of the [Betfred] Cup and played at Hampden, played at Ibrox and put a great performance in.
“Even games at Easter Road and places like that, we were never [out of our depth], we were always battling and gave good accounts of ourselves.
“There were some great performances, and to finish fourth … I mean, I think for the club that was brilliant and showed the togetherness of the boys.
“I remember the feeling after leaving some games – like when we beat Queen of the South 5-0 away from home, the night we beat St Mirren at home – the happiness, everybody was together.
“When we beat St Mirren on the Tuesday night every body was in training on the Thursday buzzing. That togertheness in the group has been brilliant all year. It’s a great bunch of boys and I’m sad to leave the dressing room.”
When asked for his thoughts on the play-off quarter-final against Dundee United, specifically the second leg, he said: “I felt we were the better team for the first half and at the start of the second, but they scored against the run of play.
“Then that puts them two ahead in the tie and they kind of relax, start passing it out a bit and the game opens up because we need to push, and they kind of picked us off at the end.
“It was hard for us then. A lot of boys had played a lot of games and the heavy legs kicked in. Obviously, we were majorly disappointed to go out of the play-offs but it was a great season for the club and I felt the boys did great this year.”
Images: David Bell