The doubters were out in force when a 15-year-old Billy Gilmour swapped Rangers for Chelsea in May 2017.
Understandably, the Light Blues were desperate to keep the fresh-faced teenager at Ibrox, according to the Scottish Sun, and had even promised to fast-track him into the first-team if he committed his future to the club.
But since declining a contract in order to follow the bright lights of Stamford Bridge, Gilmour has shown few signs of following the former Celtic wonderkid Islam Feruz into footballing obscurity.
At the age of just 17, Gilmour is now a regular for Chelsea’s U23 side and was rewarded with a professional contract in July. And, according to The Guardian, Chelsea’s coaches are even comparing the Scotland U21 ace to one of the most gifted central midfielders anywhere in world football – the peerless Marco Veratti.
Like the PSG star and Italy international, Gilmour seems to be developing the ability to control a game from central midfield with his impeccable vision and eye-catching passing range.
But the one-time Rangers starlet has not lost his goal-scoring instincts either, scoring a hat-trick as Chelsea’s U19s battered Molde 10-1 in the UEFA Youth League last week.
As reported by The Sun, former Rangers youth coach Graeme Murty believed Gilmour was close to becoming the youngest debutant in the club’s history. Now, he could be the first academy player since John Terry to force his way into Chelsea’s first-team.