Celtic defender Mikael Lustig – who is out of contract this summer, has hinted that his potential departure could have been “handled differently”, The Scotsman reports. 

Lustig, 32, had recently confirmed that Malmo – alongside fellow Swedish club AIK – have expressed an interest in him, potentially opening the door for a return to his native country.

The Swede is one of Celtic’s longest servants, spending seven and a half successful years at Parkhead, a period which saw the side win eight consecutive Scottish Premiership titles. 

The Swedish international, who has 75 caps to his name, spoke about his future following Mondays 3-0 defeat to Spain. Lustig told Sportbladet, via The Scotsman:

I am proud of how I have handled the situation and those closest to me, the players and the leaders at Celtic know what has happened. It could have been handled differently, in terms of what has been said and what happened.

Despite his obvious frustrations, the longtime Hoops full-back refused to rule out remaining with the treble winners beyond the summer:

You should never say never. I love Celtic and never thought I would feel such a connection to a club. I would never close that door. For me, that club is the fans and the job the players do for them. I have nothing but good things to say about Celtic.

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With that in mind, however, Lustig is expected to have plenty of admirers should he indeed choose to leave Celtic, with the player keen to explore opportunities outside of Europe:

I know about Malmo’s interest but I would also consider going further afield. Today it is not only Europe where you can play, I have national teammates who have moved to the United States, the Middle East and Australia.

Many fans suspect that the defender is on his way out of the club after he took to Instagram, posting a video of some of his best moments in a Celtic shirt.

 

 
 
 
 
 
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