FORMER Celtic striker Charlie Christie believes his son Ryan has a better chance of making the grade at the Hoops than he had.
The midfielder, 20, signed a four-year deal with the Hoops on Tuesday, although the £500,000 midfielder will go back on loan to Inverness Caley Thistle.

Christie senior spent two years at Parkhead in the late Eighties after making the move from the Highland League, but never played a first team game.

The 49-year-old believes it is a whole different ball game now as his son has made the switch as an established top-flight player who has not only played in Europe but is a Scottish Cup winner.294b66c

He said: “People forget I had come out of Inverness Thistle and had never been a full-time footballer.

“I had a civil service job and I went from there, and training two nights a week, to Celtic.

“Ryan’s circumstances are completely different. He has played 50 or 60 games in the Premier League, European football and has a Scottish Cup winner’s medal.

“Ryan will be far better prepared than I ever was. He knows a lot of the Celtic boys and has played against them. He goes there with his eyes open.

“But if somebody was to ask if I regret going to Celtic, I would burst out laughing because it was two of the best years of my life. I was there in their 1988 centenary season.”

Christie, who went on to make his name with Caley Thistle as player and manager, discussed the pros and cons of moving to Celtic with his son, but knew his heart was set on Celtic.

He added: “I pointed out the pitfalls and told him he would need to be patient. I reiterated the difficulties of it all.

“I knew he was keen on the move. Ryan took everything on board, but he’s a headstrong kid.

“He knows and accepts it will be a huge challenge, but he also feels he can achieve something at Celtic.

“Some people will say it is a great move, other people will say it isn’t the right move.

“Whatever happens will be up to Ryan.CN0X1qGVAAQXk1x.jpg-large

“If he works hard, continues to develop and do the right things, and gets a bit of luck along the way, then why can’t he make a real impact at Celtic?

“His progress over the last 18 months has been incredible and has surprised me, even though I always thought he would have a wee chance in the game.

“He wants to progress his career and he feels he is getting that opportunity at Celtic.

“It certainly wasn’t about money. Not once did he mention the financial side of things.”

The Celtic support has already left the new Bhoy emotional – and he wasn’t even on their books at the time.

Christie senior said: “I took Ryan to the Barcelona game in 2012 when Celtic beat them 2-1.

“When the Celtic fans were singing ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’, I turned to Ryan and he near enough had tears in his eyes and he said: ‘This is unbelievable’.

“I told him this is what he needed to aspire to if he wanted to go far in the game.”

*We now have only 16 SIGNED copies of Caesar & The Assassin remaining and expect these to be gone over this weekend. We will not be getting any more so this is your last chance to get a SIGNED copy, which is available at a discounted price. You can order direct from CQN by clicking HERE or by clicking on the photograph below. You can also check out all our other great Celtic books and DVDs – including the new 4 IN A ROAR DVD using this link. All earlier orders have been send so should be arriving round about now. Enjoy!
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