Chelsea midfielder Billy Gilmour has revealed that Andres Iniesta was his hero while he was growing up.
The Scottish teenager impressed in a deep-lying midfield role, earning praise from manager Frank Lampard and numerous pundits.
And Gilmour says Iniesta was the player in world football who he always looked up to when he was learning the game.
“It was always Iniesta," he told BBC Sport when asked who his idol was. “I just loved the way he played, how he got the ball, passing the ball.
“I like to get on the ball, drop deep a lot and create play. I’ve always been told to work hard and everything else will fall in place.”
Gilmour made his Premier League debut in August's 2-2 draw with Sheffield United but had to remain patient for game time thereafter.
His brilliant performance against Liverpool earlier this month earned the Scot a place in Lampard's XI for the visit of Everton last weekend.
And Gilmour admits he did not expect to make such rapid progress having only turned 18 last June.
“No I never expected it at all," he added. “I thought I was going to be in the Under-23s all season, but I went with the first team in pre-season and did really well.
“We came back and I was training with them a lot, and then the gaffer put me in the squad for the Sheffield [United] game. I was buzzing!”
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