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Liam Polworth can step back into David Turnbull’s role – Stephen Robinson

Motherwell v Glentoran – UEFA Europa League – First Qualifying Round – Fir Park
(Image credit: Andrew Milligan)

Motherwell manager Stephen Robinson has no concerns about his midfield after having a proven replacement for David Turnbull ready to step in.

Liam Polworth earned a recall hours after Turnbull completed a move to Celtic and the 25-year-old scored in Thursday’s 5-1 Europa League win over Glentoran.

The former Inverness player joined Motherwell last summer and, although not possessing the same goal threat as Turnbull, weighed in with a number of assists as Robinson’s side enjoyed an impressive campaign while their Scotland Under-21 international recovered from knee surgery.

Polworth was sacrificed for Turnbull after the opening game of the season but has not had long to wait for Motherwell to bring in their record transfer fee and a place in the team to open up again.

Robinson, whose side travel to Celtic Park on Sunday, said: “We finished third without David last year. Liam Polworth has already shown his quality. I thought his deliveries on Thursday night were absolutely superb. Somebody get on the end of them, please.

“But he has shown he can step in. David is an excellent footballer, he is very, very difficult to replace but Poly has shown that he can step up.

“We have Allan (Campbell), Mark (O’Hara) and Liam Donnelly to come back as well. So I think we’re OK in midfield.”

Turnbull has been included in Celtic’s squad and could make his debut against his former team as Neil Lennon looks for a lift following their Champions League defeat by Ferencvaros.

“Hopefully not,” said Robinson when asked about the prospect of facing Turnbull. “Listen, whoever Celtic put on the pitch, they are going to have players of that calibre and match-winners.

“So we know it will be a difficult game, no matter what result they had on Wednesday night, it doesn’t matter. They are a top, top side and we have to be right at the top of our game.

“Hopefully Thursday has buoyed a lot of our players. Strikers feed off goals and hopefully that will kick-start a few people into form.”