BIRIMGHAM City striker Denny Johnstone believes his season on loan with Morton proved hugely beneficial to his development and says he will always look back on his time with the club fondly.

Ton boss Jim Duffy managed to secure the 21-year-old former Celtic hitman’s services ahead of a number of Championship rivals last July.

And he was rewarded as Johnstone topped the club’s scoring charts with 17 goals in all competitions on top of six assists — only Bobby Barr managed more — as the club finished fifth in the table.

But the forward feels he too reaped the rewards from a Cappielow campaign in which he was given an invaluable opportunity to play regular first-team football.

Johnstone told the Tele: “I look back on my time at Morton really fondly. It’s definitely been worthwhile, my time with the club.

“I’ve started around 40 games, scored 17 goals, which I was happy with, learned a lot and played against some very good players and very good teams.

“It has probably been one of the best second tiers in the last 10 or 15 years obviously with Rangers and Hibs in the league.

“The two major cup competitions were good as well because it allowed me to play against defenders from Motherwell, St Johnstone and Celtic.

“So as I say I’ve learned a lot during my time on loan at Morton and feel ready to progress even further next season.”

Johnstone has a year left on his contract at St Andrew’s and expects to participate in pre-season training with his parent club before learning what the future holds.

When asked if there was a chance of a Ton return next term should he not feature in Blues boss Gary Rowett’s plans, he said: “I have a year left and will be going down for pre-season with Birmingham.

“I’ll probably spend the full pre-season and then take it from there really. 

“I’ll probably be assessed by the Birmingham staff before they decide whether they want to let me out on loan or whatever.

“They’ve had representatives at the games this season, but I think it will all depend on how I get on in pre-season.”