Celtic defender reportedly won't travel to Germany; still needs work after returning to training

By David Walton

November 22, 2021

Celtic centre-back Christopher Jullien won’t travel to Germany this week as he continues his recovery from his horrific knee injury, the Scottish Sun reports.

Jullien returned to full training after the October international break. Back then, it looked as though he was just weeks away from a return to the first-team after 10 months out with ligament damage that required surgery.

However, instead, there’s been a power of work for Jullien to get through to get up to match-fitness standards. Fast forward over a month and we’ve still to see the big Frenchman make his return.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

And it doesn’t appear as though he’ll be back on the pitch in the immediate future either. The Sun report that he won’t travel to Leverkusen, as they quoted Ange Postecoglou as saying the following:

“We still need to do some work with Chris. I know people are anxious but we are not quite there. This was sort of seen as a likely return date but we have just got to be careful. 

“I want him back but I want him back for good. I don’t want him suffering a setback.”

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Celtic need Christopher Jullien back as injury problems threaten to cause issues

We’re starting to see just how frail we are at the back in our current state. Jullien isn’t the only centre-back we have missing remember. Carl Starfelt is also still recovering from a hamstring injury picked up against Livingston last month.

Not to mention the fact that Stephen Welsh had to come off with a knock against St Johnstone on Saturday. If he wasn’t able to make Bayer Leverkusen for example, we would have to go with Cameron Carter-Vickers and Nir Bitton.

It would be an outrageous situation considering how strong we actually are in the centre-back department. But things are only going to get better if we can start getting the likes of Jullien back on the pitch.

Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images

The Frenchman and Starfelt should both be closing in on a return to action in the near future. Considering the hectic period of games we have ahead of us, it certainly isn’t ideal to have 2 centre-backs on the sidelines.

Postecoglou says, quite rightly, that he wants to take his time with Jullien. Yet at the same time, he’s going to want to rotate over the course of December in particular. To do that, he needs players like Jullien and Starfelt back fit and firing.

Hopefully, we aren’t too long from that as their respective situations drag out.

In other news, Celtic player plans to get in contact with St Johnstone man after worrying Hampden incident