CELTIC loan flop Nat Phillips admits he faces an uncertain future as he heads for football limbo.

The 27-year-old centre-back saw any hopes of an extension at Parkhead come to an abrupt and dismal end with a howler of an own goal in the shock 2-1 loss against Kilmarnock at Rugby Park on December 10.

With just 15 minutes to go, the Hoops were leading after a first-half strike from Matt O’Riley before Phillips turned a right-wing cross behind the stranded Joe Hart to gift the hosts an equaliser.

It got worse when Matty Kennedy raced through to thump the 87th-minute points-clincher into the net to inflict the first league defeat of the season on the champions.

GOING DOWN…Nat Phillips is on the ground as he diverts the ball past Joe Hart for Kilmarnock’s equaliser at Rugby Park in December.

Brendan Rodgers axed the defender from his squad for the remaining five games of the year before he was returned to Liverpool after his short-term contract expired.

He made only three starts in eight appearances for the club after arriving late in the August transfer window with the club experiencing injury concerns over Cameron Carter-Vickers, Stephen Welsh and new Bhoys Maik Nawrocki and Gustaf Lagerbielke.

Phillips, who had made only two Premier League outings for the Anfield side since 2021, was quickly moved on to Championship side Cardiff City where he teamed up again with David Turnbull after the midfielder had agreed a £2million permanent move at the turn of the year.

The former Bolton star played in the 4-1 home loss to Middlesbrough at the weekend and is expected to turn out for the mid-table team’s final Championship game of the campaign at Rotherham on Saturday.

Phillips acknowledged his career could now be in jeopardy as he prepares to return to Merseyside and a new manager in Arne Slot with the Feyenoord chief taking over from the departing Jurgen Klopp.

ALL OVER…Nat Phillips walks off after the 2-1 loss to Killie. He is followed by Oh Hyeon-gyu, stand-by keeper Scott Bain, boss Brendan Rodgers and Callum McGregor. He never figured again for the Hoops. 

The back-four operator, whose dad Jimmy had a 25-game stint at Rangers in 1987/88, said: “I’ve still got two years at Liverpool, but there’s a lot of change going on at the club, so there’s a lot up in the air.

“Football is a game of a lot of uncertainty generally, anyway. You tend to find you make one plan and something else comes along.

“I’ve learnt throughout my career to just sit back and let things unfold because it doesn’t really matter how much you try and worry about it or influence it, a lot of things are out of your control.

“It’s difficult to say [where I’ll be].”

Phillips, who has also had loan spells at VfB Stuttgart and AFC Bournemouth, may even get another opportunity to line up alongside Turnbull at Cardiff in the new season.

The centre-back, speaking to The Liverpool Echo, continued: “The goal when I came here was to play as much football as possible and I’ve done that. When I came in there was still a shot of play-offs.

“There’s a bit of disappointment that we didn’t achieve that goal, but, nevertheless, I’ve enjoyed playing regularly.”

Asked about the possibility of a return to the second-tie outfit, Phillips replied: “I’d certainly consider it. I want to continue playing regular football and enjoying my football.”

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