Celtic's David Turnbull tells all about Anthony Ralston's sock troubles as he savours Kyogo Furuhashi decision

The only issue that proved perplexing from Celtic earning a foothold in European competition beyond Christmas the other night in Budapest involved socks. Or to be precise, the deliberately ripped ones initially worn by Anthony Ralston.

Celtic's Anthony Ralston sees the game delayed over issues with holes in his socks  before Ange Postecoglou's men scored a 3-2 Europa League triumph away to  Ferencvaros on Thursday.  (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)
Celtic's Anthony Ralston sees the game delayed over issues with holes in his socks before Ange Postecoglou's men scored a 3-2 Europa League triumph away to Ferencvaros on Thursday. (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)

The evening was one to enjoy and savour for David Turnbull. The Celtic midfielder doesn’t disagree that he turned in one of his best displays in the club colours as he and his team-mates fashioned the most fizzing performance of Ange Postecoglou’s tenure to slay Ferencvaros 3-2 in the Europa League. It ensured the worst possible outcome from their Group G campaign is a third place finish that would drop them into the Europa Conference League knock-out stages, but also made sure that their bid for progress within the Europa League remains very much alive.

It was a night in the Hungarian capital to put smiles on Celtic faces and Turnbull confesses these were being sported even as kick-off was delayed by Portuguese referee Fabio Verissimo took exception to how Ralston chooses to customise his stockings. A situation that induced the chuckles again for Celtic’s only ever-present player this season – “a great throught for me, one I love...with the games coming thick and fast”, he said – as he illuminated what unfolded.

“Haha – you will need to ask him that...” the Celtic attacker said jokingly, when asked what had befallen Ralston. “I think he cuts the back of them to try and avoid cramp but with it being a European tie I don’t think the referees let you away with that. So the physios had to tape it up which meant he had to run back off again. It was not exactly that start we wanted, but it was a good laugh.”

Celtic played the sort of football that put smiles on the faces of their manager and supporters thereafter. None more so than the forever beaming Kyogo Furuhashi, who served up another dashing display with a glorious goal and assist. Turnbull agreed the Japanese striker is “very much” a joy to play with. And the Scotland international, looking forward to joining up with Steve Clarke’s squad for the decisive World Cup qualifier in Moldova following Celtic’s Sunday-lunchtime assignment in Dundee, now feels at one with the defence-disorientating movement of the 26-year-old. And Turnbull delights in his club convincing the £4.6million signing from Vissel Kobe to further his career with Celtic.

“From the first day of the season in training he has been terrific and since then he has been getting better and better,” he said. “I don’t know what other clubs were maybe in for him in the summer but we are all really happy he chose to come here because he has been a great pick up for us. I feel we have a great understanding. When he runs in behind, I know to try and find him with a through ball and when he drops off I know what he is doing in terms of linking the play. He is great player and a really good finisher when he gets the ball in the right areas. You can see all that through the amount of goals he has got for us already and I hope he can keep doing even more of that in the remainder of the season.”

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