DYLAN McGEOUCH could have been one of the bright young stars newco Rangers will have to depend on to drag them back up the divisions.
Instead, the talented teen faces a completely different challenge – to make the breakthrough into Celtic's midfield.
However, McGeouch – who moved from Parkhead to Ibrox in 2008 and back to Parkhead last season – is still convinced there is simply no contest in terms of where he would rather be and which battle he would rather be waging.
He is recovering from his start against Augsburg on Tuesday and is looking ahead to playing against Stuttgart Kickers on Sunday in the second leg of the champions' pre-season tour.
But the kid who set the club alight with his wonder goal on his Parkhead debut against St Mirren in November revealed that his focus is only on what is happening at Parkhead, not on those he left behind across the city.
The 19-year-old said: "I just kind of keep my distance from them. Obviously, I have friends, but if I see them when I am out, or whatever, I let them get on with their side.
"I'm just involved in this side and concentrate on training with Celtic."
McGeouch does not try to pretend he had any inside knowledge or even an inkling about the calamity which was about to hit Rangers when he decided to reverse the move which had taken him over to Murray Park.
"There wasn't any reason why I left Rangers other than I wanted to come back to Celtic," said the kid who had Neil Lennon at his family home to seal the deal.
"What has happened now had nothing to do with it."
It was a switch which has already delivered the kind of reward McGeouch hoped it would with an instant promotion to training with the first-team squad and an early debut.
However, it proved tough to build on what was a sudden impact, and McGeouch has quickly realised that holding down a first-team place is even tougher than getting a foot in the door.
"I did well when I came in, scoring in my first game at Parkhead," he said. "I got bits and pieces of games after that.
"Hopefully, I can step up and play a lot more and take a lot more part in the games.
"But it's a big squad and there are good international players here, so, for a young lad like myself it's hard to break through and then stay in the team.
"This is a big club and Celtic are always bringing in top players. They are always in front of you.
"Hopefully, you can do better in training, impress and get more involved in the team."
The youngster added: "I want to try and get another couple of games under my belt before we hit the season.
"It was a wee bit of a surprise to start on Tuesday, but it's good to get a full 90 minutes under my belt so early.
"We were a bit rusty, but we got there in the end and it was a very good run out for all of us."
Like everyone else at the club, McGeouch was sent off for the summer with a detailed training programme to ensure he returned in the best possible condition.
And the youngster was grateful for the help. He said: "We got programmes to take away with us.
"I had my holidays then did a pre-season myself, running and that sort of thing.
"The programmes basically tell you what to do on a daily basis to keep you on top of everything and on your toes.
"That's good for a young player because you can get carried away, having so much time off that you're not really used to."
Lennon is also more than willing to offer pointers to the likes of McGeouch, and, from his touchline bench during the game against Augsburg, he could be heard frequently shouting coaching tips to the kid playing just a few feet away wide in midfield.
"The manager gets his point across," said McGeouch. "He knows what he likes and what he wants us to achieve this year.
"We eventually got there against Augsburg, we started to play a bit better and passed the ball about well towards the end of the game.
"He has conversations with the whole team and has one-to-ones as well.
"It's just general chat, to tell you what you can achieve and what you can improve on."