Reported return to Sweden is best for Celtic's Mikael Lustig

By Connor Gordon

November 20, 2018

Celtic right-back Mikael Lustig is being linked with a move home to Sweden with AIK.

The veteran defender is being followed by the Stockholm club according to Swedish site FotbollDirekt.

The move would be the best option for both player and club as Celtic look to downsize.

Lustig may want to stay but is it the right thing to do

Calls for Lustig’s transfer from the club have reached its peak recently due to poor performances domestically and in Europe.

Although fans have appreciated the Swede’s service to the club, they think it’s time for him to move on.

Swedish international wants to stay at the club. (Photo by Callum Landells/Getty Images)

Lustig commented on his Celtic future, telling Expressen: “I have a contract with Celtic and I think I’ll play there next year too.”

His contract is up at Parkhead at the end of the season.

Leadership qualities and experience on his side

Despite a rough season, Lustig has been able to hold down the right-back slot over the years.

Players such as Saidy Janko, Christian Gamboa and Jack Hendry have all had spells in his position.

Saidy Janko was suspected successor. (Photo By David Maher/Sportsfile via Getty Images)

Yet, the 31-year-old continues to surprise fans and managers alike.

The Swede has played consistently under three managers since joining from Norwegian champions Rosenborg.

The defender is a fighter and does love the club like a fan does.

It is in Europe though that the right-back has been leaving more to be desired.

The pace of the game at the highest level is too fast and his stamina is decreasing with age.

Takumi Minamino ran rings round the right-back in Europe. (Photo by Michael Molzar/SEPA.Media /Getty Images)

One-on-one, the Swede can stand up and be counted with any player.

However, players who are quicker or smarter than Lustig will more likely win their duels with him.

Sadly, this is an issue that hasn’t been addressed by Lustig or the scouting team.

The best move for ‘Mika’ is a move back home to Sweden as it suits his current ability.

Celtic can then free up wages and perhaps sign a much-needed new right-back that can provide more to the club than the Swede currently can.