Celtic defender Christopher Jullien appears set to finally seal his exit from Parkhead, with the Frenchman seemingly in line for a return to his homeland.
According to L’Equipe, the 29-year-old is heading for an imminent move to Ligue 1 club Montpellier, with the towering setback set to undergo a medical on Tuesday (today) ahead of that loan switch.
The former Toulouse man – who signed for the Old Firm outfit for £7m in 2019 – has just one year remaining on his existing deal in Glasgow, with the player having fallen out of favour under manager Ange Postecoglou.
A departure from the Premiership champions has been mooted all summer as a result of that slide down the pecking order, with the 6 foot 5 brute having previously seen a temporary move to Bundesliga side Schalke 04 collapse earlier in the transfer window.
Provided that Jullien does secure his move in the coming days, it will allow Postecoglou the chance to rid himself of a player who is clearly not to his liking, having hardly handed the £20k-per-week giant a sniff since his appointment last year.
While the former France under-20 international was absent for the first half of last season after enduring more than a year on the sidelines due to a serious knee injury, it had seemingly been expected that he would be brought back into the fold upon his return to fitness in January.
However, the Hoops were simply not in need of his services as they charged towards a tenth league title in the past 11 seasons, with the former Yokohama F. Marinos boss settling on the “immense” defensive partnership (as dubbed by Chris Sutton) of Carl Starfelt and Cameron Carter-Vickers.
As a result, the £4.05m-rated man was restricted to just a solitary appearance totalling 16 minutes in the 2021/22 campaign, with the player himself having spoken out about what was a wholly “frustrating” period on the substitutes’ bench for him – or, in some cases, in the stands.
With Jullien largely restricted to a viewing brief, the club have seemingly been unaffected by his absence. The summer addition of young Moritz Jenz has further hampered the Frenchman’s chances of playing time, withthe 23-year-old already netting twice since his loan move from Lorient.
With the likes of young Dane Murray also waiting in the wings to secure a more prominent role in the first team, the departure of Jullien should free up space in the squad – and on the wage bill – moving forward.
While it may be something of a blow to lose a fairly costly addition for nothing, it is no doubt best for all concerned that club and player sever ties before the September 1st deadline.