WHEN Kieran Tierney says he is a homeboy who is in no hurry to fly the nest, that applies as much to his personal life as his professional existence.

When the 20-year-old – who would be forgiven these days if he started to regard bumper new contracts at Celtic as a bounty which comes around on an annual basis – signed his last improved deal, shortly after Brendan Rodgers’ arrival at the club, he made good on a long-held promise and bought his mum and dad a new house in Motherwell.

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HeraldScotland: Celtic's Kieran Tierney. Picture: SNS

While the move facilitated his elder sister getting the run of their old council house in which he was brought up in Muirhouse, it was anything but an excuse for Tierney to up sticks for a fancy footballers’ pad in the city centre. Forget about the imperative to keep on the right side of his club gaffer; when Tierney returns home to Lanarkshire he has to remember to take his dirty laundry downstairs and not leave dishes up in his room.

“As soon as I got my deal the last time, I bought a house for my mum and dad,” says Tierney. “That was the one thing I always wanted to do. But I still live at home with them too – I don’t plan on moving out for a good few years yet! I can’t do anything for myself yet!

“We still live in Motherwell, a couple of minutes from where we lived before,” he added. “It keeps me grounded in some ways, living under the same roof as your mum and dad. They are still in charge.

“My mum still says I leave my dishes in the room or don’t bring my washing down,” he added. “It’s just always been like that. Nothing has changed with my family. It’s all good. I don’t need to DO the dishes. I just need to bring them down the stairs.

“But I try not to get big-headed anyway, so hopefully they don’t have to ever bring me back down to earth. I’ve got them, as well as a lot of good friends, who would tell me if I ever got out of line or too big-time. Most of my friends are apprentices and still living at home. It’s quite hard for young people these days to get a house or a flat so young. It’s a lot of money.”

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When you see Tierney looking every bit the polished, ready-made Champions League player he appeared against the likes of Bayern Munich’s Arjen Robben in midweek you have to remind yourself that there have been stages in his journey where contracts weren’t so forthcoming. Along with Aaron Comrie, the young St Johnstone full back whom he may come in close contact with against the Perth side in midweek, Tierney was struggling for game time and being left to sweat over his future. While both were eventually offered an 11th hour, one-year contract, some of his team-mates got three-year ones. The morale of the story for any young player is to stick in there.

“There was a time when I wasn’t getting a game,” said Tierney. “At 14 or 15, we went to the school that Celtic sent you to [St Ninian’s in Lennoxtown]. It was at the stage when Scotland starts coming about and I never got picked for Scotland. And a lot of times when you’re not in the Scotland squad, you’re not really playing club football either. “Times like that were very hard,” he added. “It was getting near the end of the school term and a lot of them had heard about their contracts. Me and a couple of others hadn’t. It was me and Aaron Comrie, who I will hopefully be playing against on Saturday. Neither of us heard anything till very, very late on. We got a deal in the end but the others got a longer-term deal. They got three-year deals at the start and we got one year. At times like that, you are looking at other options, whether it is to go away working or try and find another team. So youth football wasn’t all plain sailing for me.”