“It’s no secret that I want to play,” Lagerbielke hints at Celtic summer exit

Gustaf Lagerbielke has been discussing his options for the season ahead back home in Sweden and it looks like he is set on playing his football elsewhere, rather than fighting for his place at Celtic.

His move to Celtic last summer has been frustrating for the 24 year-old as he has struggled to get game-time with Brendan Rodgers seeing him far down the list of central defensive options available to the Celtic manager.

Lecce still interested

Lagerbielke looked set for a loan to move to Italian side Lecce in the January transfer window, but that fell through at the last minute due to Celtic’s ongoing injury problems last season. Now Lecce are reportedly keen to pursue Lagerbielke once again, with other options opening up too.

Celtic are more likely to prefer a permanent transfer rather than a loan deal as the Scottish Champions seek to recoup as much of the £3m fee paid to Elfsborg as possible. And Lagerbielke himself is anxious to ensure he is going to gate game-time next season. If that is unlikely to happen at Celtic then a move will suit all parties.

I have a contract with Celtic

Lagerbielke told Swedish outlet Fotbollskanalen: “I know that there are a number of teams that are interested, but not much more than that. There are interested teams in Italy and also other leagues.

“It is difficult to say anything before something is ready. I have a contract with Celtic, but it’s no secret that I want to play.

 I’ll take a lot from Celtic

Lagerbielke managed just ten appearances under Brendan Rodgers last season but insists he doesn’t regret joining the Hoops, describing his time as Celtic like this: “Very instructive. I have developed a lot and become a better player. I have brought a lot with me. I’m looking forward to the future and I think I’ll take a lot from Celtic to the next team I join.”

Celtic’s Irish defender Liam Scales fights for the ball with Atletico Madrid’s French striker Antoine Griezmann during the UEFA Champions League match between Celtic and Atletico Madrid at Celtic Park on October 25, 2023. (Photo by ANDY BUCHANAN/AFP via Getty Images)

Essentially Lagerbielke has lost out to Liam Scales who was the surprise package in the Celtic squad last season. With then Aberdeen manager on the phone multiple times to Brendan Rodgers to conclude a permanent transfer for the Ireland international centre-half, Rodgers held off to give himself the chance to evaluate the player.

Early season injuries to Maik Nawrocki and Cameron Carter-Vickers gave both Scales and indeed Lagerbielke their chance, with the two forming an impressive partnership at Ibrox last September in the 1-0 Celtic victory.

However Lagerbielke was one of two Celtic summer signings sent off against Feyenoord in the Champions League opener last September and both paid a heavy price in terms of the manager’s confidence in each player, with neither Odin Thiago Holm or Gustaf Lagerbielke getting bus of a look-in for the rest of the season, as Celtic went on to win the double.

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Tags Brendan Rodgers Celtic Shorts Celtic transfer gossip Gustaf Lagerbielke

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