Chris Sutton laughs off potential Celtic to Burnley route for Ryan Christie
Chris Sutton has been laughing off the idea of Ryan Christie leaving Celtic for Burnley as he praised him for his display against Midtjylland.
Christie started new manager Ange Postecoglou’s first competitive game. That’s despite the fact his contract is up in January and he’s been linked with several moves away.
Burnley have been one of the sides linked with a move for Christie as an option down south [Daily Mail print edition, 08/07, Euros Verdict, p11]. With Christie free to talk to potential suitors, Sean Dyche could be set to move for him.
But Sutton has been laughing off the idea that a move to the Clarets is an attractive proposition. Instead, he’s struggling to understand why Christie would want to leave given the options available.
Speaking on Premier Sports last night [20/07, 21:54], Sutton said: “I thought he was brilliant, not a sulker. If he wants away fine. I don’t understand why he does want away.
“He’s been linked with Burnley down south. Come on, how old is he? That’s hardly attractive. Maybe financially, but football-wise? And you can see the impact that he had on the Celtic team. I wondered about his fitness, but he was super-fit and that was a performance full of commitment and quality.
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“Maybe he doesn’t feel loved at Celtic. I think there’s a section of the Celtic fans that give him stick, but with performances like that he’ll win them over.”
Chris Sutton won’t be the only one to praise Ryan Christie after last night
That was much more like it from Christie last night. Unlike last season, he looked to be full of energy and drive. Almost everything positive about Celtic going forward last night came from the Scotland international.
Last season, we were used to seeing Christie slow down attacks. Whether it be via poor or hesitant decision-making, or whether it was down to dismal efforts from range – he was a shadow of what he’s truly capable of.
Time will tell whether this is a reborn Christie under the new manager. But his performance last night? He could very easily have been walking home with the man-of-the-match award.
However, despite all of that, the question over his long-term future just isn’t going to go away. So long as he has a contract that expires in just several months’ time, we’re right to question where his loyalties lie.
How Postecoglou dealt with this situation was always going to be interesting. He could very easily have discarded Christie given his refusal to sign a new deal. That he hasn’t suggests that he’s satisfied with his commitment.
More performances like last night and he’ll be winning many fans back over too.