Celtic can win Europa League insists Christopher Jullien

Christopher Jullien leads the way during a Celtic training session. Picture: Paul Devlin/SNS
Christopher Jullien leads the way during a Celtic training session. Picture: Paul Devlin/SNS
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Christopher Jullien has insisted Celtic are genuine contenders to win the Europa League this season.

As the Scottish champions gear up for the start of their group stage campaign this week, defender Jullien revealed they are unified by an ambition to go all the way and lift the trophy at the final in Gdansk next May.

Celtic’s despair at being eliminated in the Champions League qualifiers by Cluj last month has been replaced by a fierce desire to make a major impact in the Europa League.

They open their Group E schedule against Rennes in France on Thursday night, seeking a positive start in a section which will also see them face top seeds Lazio and a rapid reunion with Romanian champions Cluj.

Celtic have never gone further
than the last 16 of a European tournament in the last 15 years but Jullien is convinced the winning mentality of the squad he joined this summer can drive them towards continental glory this season.

“I believe we can go far in the Europa League, absolutely,” he said. “Since I arrived here, I have seen that all of the players constantly have trophies on their minds. They want to win at everything – even in training – and I think this is important for our team.

“That gives us hope and we will see what happens. We will take it game by game and see what it is but if you were to go into our locker room now and ask each of them what their goal was they would tell you it is to bring that trophy home – and I’m just following them.

“I think the same way as them. Everything I do is geared to winning and I hope we can go on and do something really special in this competition.”