Frustrated Christopher Jullien – “Unsatisfied with playing time this season”

Celtic have announced a three-year deal for James Forrest alongside the exits of Tom Rogic and Nir Bitton in a busy 24 hours at the club, and now it appears one other player may be doing his best to work his ticket.

In An interview with Goal, Christopher Jullien has let his frustrations at a lack of gametime and the manager’s preference to utilise the versatility of Nir Bitton on the bench, rather than find a slot for the big Frenchman, as cause for complaint.

Christopher Jullien of Celtic (L) celebrates with the trophy following victory in the Betfred Cup Final between Rangers FC and Celtic FC at Hampden Park on December 08, 2019 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)

“Since mid-January, I feel 100%, after that it is the choices of the coach. It belongs to him and he is successful: we have been champions since Wednesday and in December we won the cup.

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

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

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

Christopher Jullien during the Celtic FC away kit launch at Celtic Park (Photo by Alan Harvey / SNS Group)

Jullien’s frustration may be understandable, after all after a long period in rehab from a horrific knee injury it must be difficult to see game time curtailed.

Yet in the first team stands the best central defensive partnership in Scotland in the shape of Carl Starfelt and Cameron Carter -Vickers, meanwhile Stephen Welsh, another who doesn’t always make the squad cut for matchday, is certainly ahead of Jullien in the pecking order. And that is very much deserved on the performances he has put in when Jullien wasn’t available for selection and squad rotation was required.

That’s football, when you are injured or suspended life goes on, and someone is always ready to take your place if you have a strong squad of players.

And when it comes to the bench on a matchday, an ability to be versatile, as Nir Bitton offers with an ability to play both in central defence and midfield, is a crucial to a manager who has to prepare for every eventuality occurring in any given match.

But then you get the impression Christopher Jullien probably knows all that and has simply let his frustration get the best of him when making ill-advised comments like these, and you can’t imagine Ange Postecoglou being happy, if these quotes attributed to Jullien in Goal are to be believed.

As such if Christopher Jullien was down the pecking order this season, even in the absence of Nir Bitton next year, he may well find himself outside the manager’s circle of trust once more.

It may well be Jullien, alongside Rogic and Bitton, may be playing his football elsewhere next season, because comments like these won’t go down well in a happy dressing room.

Niall J


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About Author

As a Bellshill Bhoy I was taken to my first Celtic game in the summer of 1987. It was Billy McNeill’s return to Celtic Park as manager and Celtic lost 5-1 to Arsenal . I thought I was a jinx, I think my Grandfather might have thought the same. It was the finest gift anyone ever gave me when he walked me through Parkhead's gates.

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