Former Scotland striker Frank McAvennie has delivered his verdict on the future of Celtic defender Christopher Jullien.
The lowdown: Exit twist
Earlier this summer, Jullien was believed to be teetering on the edge of a fresh challenge involving a transfer to Bundesliga club Schalke, with the towering Frenchman flying out to Germany in order to undergo a medical ahead of the switch.
Now, as Jullien looks to breathe a new lease of life into a career stuttering due to wretched injury fortunes, one invested onlooker has delivered his verdict on the centre-back’s future at Parkhead…
The latest: ‘By all accounts…’
Speaking to Football Insider, McAvennie – who of course played for the Hoops – suggested that the twice-capped France Under 20 star will struggle to feature in Postecoglou’s side after the previous pre-season match vs Rapid Vienna.
He said: “Jullien’s not going to get a game, it’s obvious. He’s had his chance in the first team.
“The manager said it’s down to Jullien whether to leave but he’s got to step up if he wants to stay. In the preseason games he’s got to prove that he wants to stay there. He’s got to prove to the manager that he wants to stay there. By all accounts in the game (vs Vienna) he didn’t.
“I know it’s all about fitness but if you’ve been out the team for two years, you’re wanting to prove a point. There’s players that need to go out, [Karamoko] Dembele was one of the players that had to go and I think there’s a few more.”
The verdict: Spot on
Albeit keeping the experience of a 234 career games Jullien around would represent superb strength-in-depth in the Lennoxtown ranks, ousting Cameron Carter-Vickers and Carl Starfelt as the frontline central defensive partnership seems unlikely at this stage and could ultimately hinder the development of youngsters such as Stephen Welsh.
In the final 12 months of a contract at Parkhead and still holding a market value of £4.05million (Transfermarkt), the Hoops could still recoup a relatively worthwhile sum for the Frenchman, who was hailed as physically ‘immense’ by journalist Robin Bairner.
Furthermore, currently earning a reported £20,000 per week (Salary Sport), Celtic would be wise to move to free up those wages off the books in order to create space for alternative targets that remain on the list of transfer priorities at Celtic Park.
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