IT is a sign of both the youthful bent to the Celtic squad, and the rising status of Greg Taylor within that group, that the 24-year-old would now consider himself as one of the leaders of the dressing room.

As well as taking on the challenge of becoming a first-team regular this season - one he has conquered – Taylor is taking on the mantle of helping Callum McGregor keep the rest of the Celtic boys in line and on their toes.

The full-back is one of a few deputies working with the club captain to ensure that everything is ticking over nicely, and he is relishing the added responsibility he is now entrusted with by a player he admires so much in reinforcing the fundamentals that have brought Ange Postecoglou’s team such success.

“I think his consistency over the last six or seven years has been pretty remarkable,” Taylor said. “The number of matches he churns out at a high level is top-class.

“We are good friends and we don’t hide that. But more importantly for the club he is a top-class player and a top-class captain.

“He is following one of the greatest captains in the club’s history in Broony (Scott Brown) and I think he is doing really well.

“He is the most vocal one and the one that leads us on but equally there are five or six of us behind him that try to chip away and keep the group in line and keep doing what has brought us success. We will continue to do that.

“I’m 24 years old and I’m classed as the old guard so it is a bit bizarre. But I think it is a pressure and a responsibility that I have enjoyed this year, being looked at as one of the more senior players.

“Hopefully I can continue to do that – try to help the others, and try to improve myself.”

There are few among the Celtic support who would argue against his last point, as Taylor has won over many sceptics this term with his ability to adapt to the unusual demands placed on him by his manager.

“I think I have had a successful season personally but that only becomes possible with the collective – everyone playing their small part in the team,” he said.

“If you all do that then you normally get decent success and I think we have done that this year. Whether it is the goalie, full-backs, midfielders – everyone has played their part and that is the reason that we have been successful together.

“It has been a new way of playing but it has been one I’ve enjoyed learning. I continue to try and learn from it because we know as a team we are not the finished article yet.

“We are a good team but we want to become a great one. Hopefully over the next few months we can do that.”

This has been a theme of the pronouncements from Celtic since they wrapped up a League Cup and Premiership double last week, with Taylor believing that there is plenty of improvement within the players already in the squad.

He has been around the block long enough to know though that at a club like Celtic, your place is never assured, and reinforcements will also be recruited this summer as Postecoglou tries to prepare a team fit to compete in the Champions League group stage.

Taylor sees that fact though not as a threat to his own position, but as a necessary step in the team’s evolution.

“I think we need that,” he said. “We can’t rest on what we have achieved so far.

“We have had a successful season, winning the double, but we need to progress next year.

“We want to be bigger and better and I think by bringing bodies that pushes everyone on again.”

Taylor’s leadership role within that squad may be even more pronounced next season, of course, following the departures of old heads Nir Bitton and Tom Rogic. Two men who will be missed both on and off the field.

“It was sad, Tom was quite emotional,” said Taylor. “He got the send-off he deserved.

“He has been a great servant of the club. He provided massive goals and massive performances.

“Nir just leads by example. Again, he’s one of the senior boys. He has been vice-captain this year and taken on a lot of responsibility and done really well. His last few performances [were] top class.

“They will be two big misses around the place but I’m sure they will do well wherever they end up next.”

What seems certain to be next for Taylor is a place in Steve Clarke’s Scotland squad for their hectic June schedule, which kicks off in spectacular style with the World Cup play-off semi-final against Ukraine.

“I still have to be picked,” he said. “I never take it for granted. Hopefully I get picked and then it is another exciting period.

“I’ll enjoy the next couple of weeks, maybe get away for a few days and then I’ll be ready to go for the Scotland games.”