Mikey Johnston is a clear fan favourite at Celtic. Blessed with his magic feet and relentless pace, he has the ability to lift Celtic fans out of their seats wherever they are; be it at Paradise or, like most in the current climate, the safety of their living room.
Living with his parents, Mikey strikes me as the sort of stereotypical kid that professionals talk about at some point in their careers; the one who played on the streets as soon as he got home from school until the streetlights were forced to go off or their mothers dragged them in by their ears.
It is probably this commitment that he has held throughout his career which is why he dons the famous green and white; despite having not made a start this season, he has been injured for ten months following a knee injury he picked up in a game against St Johnstone last January, and before that he was in and out of the first XI at the age of just 20; a remarkable feat.
And, according to the Daily Record, well-liked Open Goal podcast host Si Ferry revealed that he sees Mikey Johnstone training down the park every night in order to get back to the level he was a year ago before his treatment-table setbacks.
Speaking on Go Radio, Ferry said: “For any young kid listening, here is one for you. Mikey Johnston stays the street down from me with his mum and dad. I drive home from here at 7:30-8 at night, and Mikey Johnstone is out in the public parks, simply practising. He’s up with a ball at the Stepps Playing Fields, smashing balls about! So there you go. That’s why he’s where he is, isn’t it?”
Ferry’s comments serve as a nice reminder that even in the new era of football – with social media, top training methods, state of the art facilities and the like – that nothing, absolutely nothing, beats a kick-about down the local park.