Christopher Jullien casts doubt on Celtic future as he breaks silence on injury return

Frustrated Christopher Jullien admits he’s considering his Celtic future after struggling to break into Ange Postecoglou’s plans since his return from injury.

The Frenchman insists he has been fit since January after spending 13 months on the sidelines with cruciate damage.

But the £7m defender, a treble winner in his first season at Parkhead, has failed to shift Postecoglou signings Cameron Carter-Vickers and Carl Starfelt and only managed 16 minutes of top team football under the Aussie.

Jullien still has a year left on his contract.

But speaking to Goal the 29-year-old admitted his lack of gametime has him seriously weighing up his future with the champions.

Jullien said: “Despite the fact that I gave everything for this club and I would have liked to bring more to the team this year, the playing time is not there at all.

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“I still have a year of contract here and I would like to continue playing but my priority is to be on the pitch. But in my situation and with this playing time, it is not possible.”

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The towering defender is desperate for a run out in Saturday’s final league match of the season against Motherwell.

But asked where he sees himself playing his football after the summer Jullien added: “It remains open. I don’t really have a preference.

“The only thing I know is that I am a competitor and I came to Celtic to win titles. I won some and I still have the ambition to win some and be on the pitch but today I miss it.

“If the conditions do not change, it is certain that on my side the door will be open to continue my career elsewhere in a club where the coach would be happy to rely on my qualities.

“For the last match, if the coach could give me 90 minutes, that would be great.”

Jullien was a £7m signing from Toulouse three years ago and was an almost ever-present as the Hoops won the treble in his first season.

But his career stalled after a painful collision with a post in a 3-0 win over Dundee United at Parkhead in December 2020.

A paintaking year saw him go under the knife then spend time in rehab at the French football base at Clairefontaine.

Jullien says he’s been fit and available since January but accepts Celtic’s almost perfect charge to the title since then has made opportunities difficult.

The former Freiburg and Dijon defender said: “Since mid-January, I feel 100 per cent, after that it is the choice of the coach.

“It belongs to him and he is successful: we have been champions since Wednesday and in December we won the cup.

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“And on the return phase, they only lost two points so it’s really exceptional.

“For my part, I told the coach in January that I was ready to go. Now it’s his choice of him and sometimes he does n’t take me on the bench because he prefers to take a midfielder who can play in central defense.

“I’m still unsatisfied with my playing time this season because it’s frustrating and all I want is to be on the pitch.

“The last time I found myself in a similar situation, I was playing in Germany and I didn’t have much playing time.

“But afterwards, the rebound I made in Dijon was good and we moved up to Ligue 1. This vengeful spirit is there and I’m sure I’ll be back. When I was on the operating table, I said to myself that it was a new beginning.”

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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