Christopher Jullien’s upcoming return will lift the mood all around Celtic, former Scotland manager Alex McLeish says.
Jullien has been absent since last December, when he ruptured a cruciate ligament against Dundee United.
But he’s expected to return to first-team training after the October international break. Once he’s built up his fitness, he’ll be able to return to action (via Daily Record).
It will be a welcome boost for manager Ange Postecoglou, who’s facing something an injury crisis at present.
Giorgos Giakoumakis, Greg Taylor, Callum McGregor and Kyogo Furuhashi are among the list of absentees.
Jullien has been hailed as an ‘excellent’ player by Neil Lennon, who was still in charge when he sustained his injury.
McLeish says Postecoglou will be ‘delighted’ to welcome the Frenchman back, and also thinks he’ll raise standards at Lennoxtown.
“The manager will be, I think, delighted to get him back because they have to be at his kind of level,” McLeish told Football Insider.
“The level he showed before the injury was a high one. Maybe when Jullien comes back and amongst them and joins in training, I always think better players and more experienced players inspire the others.
“They may be looking at him in training, seeing him in games saying: ‘I should be doing that. I have to get to that standard.'”
McLeish is spot on. Jullien is one of those defenders whose presence is arguably just as valuable as his tangible attributes. He’ll elevate the whole backline.
And depending on how quickly he can get back up to speed – patience might well be required after such a long lay-off – he may have a part to play in extending European’s adventure.
In other news, read this damning insight on an out-of-favour Celtic midfielder.
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