"This was why I left Celtic"; Ryan Christie speaks about move to England

By Dave Flanigan

August 7, 2022

Former Celtic midfielder Ryan Christie has opened up on his exit from Paradise a year on from making the move south to Bournemouth.

The 27-year-old left the Hoops on deadline day last summer after 5 years at the club, and will star in the Premier League this season following the Cherries’ promotion, with tough fixtures against Man City, Liverpool and Arsenal all in their next three fixtures.

Christie told The Daily Mail: “These are the games I was desperate to play in. I now have this opportunity to play against the best club sides in the world, so it feels really exciting. 

Photo by Steve Welsh/Getty Images

“This was why I left Celtic: to play in the Premier League, to get that chance, to show that I could handle it. Well, now I’m here. Now I have that chance.”

The Scotland international was unmoved by the criticism that faced him from some corners after his Celtic exit, in a window when Celtic also lost Scott Brown, Olivier Ntcham, Kristoffer Ajer and Odsonne Edouard.

“I heard some of the chat about me leaving Celtic, and some of the comments that were made,” Christie said. “To be honest, I tended to ignore it. I heard about it more from family or my mates but I didn’t bother reading or listening to it myself. For my career, I knew what I wanted to do. I had to leave Celtic for the sake of change and a new football challenge.”

Inspired by his Scotland teammates who have made similar moves south from big clubs in Scotland’s central belt, Christie is looking forward to mixing it with some of the best in the world in the forthcoming season.

He said: “I can look back to so many big games I’ve played in — for Celtic and Scotland — and knowing that I have done that has given me confidence. I feel like I can compete at this level.

“Internationally, I’ve come up against a lot of these top players, plus I’ve trained with a lot of the Scotland boys who are already in the Premier League.  So I know what this level of football is all about. Hopefully, me and the rest of this Bournemouth team can show that we are good enough to be in this league.

“I look at Scottish boys who are already at this level — John McGinn and Stuart Armstrong — and I think it’s great for Scottish football to see them playing in the Premier League, and not just playing in it, but doing really well in it. I’d like to do the same.”

Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

The former Inverness man excelled in his few appearances under Postecoglou, with his high-intensity game perfectly matching the Aussie’s style.

With only six months left on his contract, Celtic were able to get a fee for the 27-year-old, but he has turned into a bargain signing for the Cherries, who stormed to automatic promotion last season, finishing second in the Championship behind Fulham.

Despite a disappointing final season, it’s difficult to begrudge Christie a successful Premier League career after the midfielder provided so many lasting memories for Celtic supporters.

In other news: Defender claims Celtic interest after completing Serie A move