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MY DEBT TO RONNY,’ KT

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KIERAN TIERNEY has paid tribute to former Celtic boss Ronny Deila for launching his spectacular rise to fame.

It was the Norwegian who gave the-then teenage defender his fist team debut against Dundee at Dens Park.

The Scotland international left-back admitted he will always be thankful to Deila for setting him on his way.

Tierney scored the first goal of the 7-0 win over Motherwell, Deila’s final game in charge and the first match of the 63 unbeaten UK sequence under Brendan Rodgers.

The 20-year-old star, who agreed a six-year deal last month, said: “I came on against Dundee for my debut and I was on £200 a week.

“I was just a wee kid and in those first two games I was playing as a fan, but on Flag Day in the next season, I really thought ‘I want to play for Celtic and get a run of games.

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“Luckily for me, Ronny Deila had faith in me and he played me.

“I will always be grateful to him. I can’t describe how much he has changed my life.

“He gave me the platform to play. I played in the Europa League against Fenerbahce in my fourth match and playing in such a big game like that so early on helped me develop as a player and gave me confidence.

“That game could have gone either way and it could have broken my Celtic career.

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“For him to have faith in me and to keep playing me in the Europa League – I think I played four Europa games that season – was special.

“The dream isn’t just to play with Celtic, but to come through the different levels and eventually make your first-team debut.

“You think the hardest thing is getting your chance, but it is even harder taking it.

“As a young boy, you only get a couple of games to bed into the team which is tough, but luckily I had a manager who trusted me.”

* Kieran Tierney was talking to the Celtic View, on sale now.

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