FORMER Celtic striker Leigh Griffiths insists he can “still cut it at the highest level”.
The 31-year-old ex-Scotland international hitman, who claimed 123 goals for the Hoops, is on the look-out for his FOURTH club in a year.
Ange Postecoglou activated the 12-month option on Griffiths’ contract at the end of June last year, but the forward didn’t kick a ball in a competitive game for the new Parkhead boss.
He was loaned to Dundee before the August transfer deadline, but scored only three goals before the struggling Tayside outfit returned him to his parent club in January.
LAST HURRAH AT THE HOOPS…Leigh Griffiths in his final appearance for Celtic as a second-half substitute in the friendly against West Ham at Parkhead on July 24 2021.
Griffiths, with six months to run on his terms, was paid in full as his contract was scrapped to end his eight-year association in the east end of Glasgow after Neil Lennon paid £1.2million to Wolves for the lively and prolific raider in January 2014.
He joined up at third-tier Falkirk – reportedly on a £1,500-per-week deal – to help their push for a Championship play-off place.
However, the bid failed and Griffiths, with only two strikes for the team, left at the end of an ill-starred campaign.
The frontman is now in limbo and, asked about his future destination, answered: “Right now, I honestly have no idea. There will be split opinion of: ‘Is my career finished, do I need to drop down leagues or can I still cut it at the highest level?’.
“For me, I can still cut it at the highest level, I fully believe that, and it’s about getting that chance to prove myself again.
“I’ve kept saying over the years, but I need keep proving myself to people who keep doubting me and nowadays there seems more and more. But nobody will be more thrilled to do it than me, but it’s about getting that chance and a manager who fully believes I can still cut it.”
HAMPDEN HERO…Leigh Griffiths slams in Celtic’s third goal in the 3-3 draw against Hearts in the delayed Scottish Cup Final on December 20 2020. He also scored in the penalty-kick shoot-out as the Hoops completed the quadruple treble.
Griffiths, speaking to BBC Sportsound, continued: “Right now, you have to look at every option. It’s a dog eat dog world out there, everyone is fighting for contracts, trying to get the best club they can – and I am no different.
“A lot of things have happened over the last couple of years, clubs might not want to be associated with me, but I am just working as tirelessly as I can and get myself in the best shape, ready to go into whatever pre-season clubs are at.
“Then it’s just about trying to hit the ground running, put a smile back on my face and be on the back page for all the right reasons.
“My agent is working extremely hard to get me a club, whether that’s here, abroad, or down in England, that’s something I’ve got to consider massively.”
THE WAY IT WAS…Leigh Griffiths, in the treasured No.9 shirt, celebrates one of his 123 goals for Celtic.
The one-time proven marksman has struggled over the past four seasons to replicate the devastating form that once saw him score FORTY-ONE goals in one campaign in Ronny Deila’s debut term in 2004/05.
Griffiths added: “I’m not going to lie, my confidence is lower than a snake’s belly at the minute and that’s because I’m seeing people going back to training, playing games, being back amongst changing rooms.
“I’m doing my work myself in the gym and then watching Sky Sports News and seeing everyone back for pre-season.
“Hopefully, I can get my confidence back because that’s when you see the best of me.”