Ryan Christie’s decision to quit Celtic for English Championship side AFC Bournemouth not only raised a few eyebrows but drew a wide range of criticism by former Hoops stars.
The Scotland international brought an end to his trophy-laden six-year spell at Parkhead by completing a shock deadline day switch to the South coast outfit with his contract set to expire in January.
The 26-year-old had previously played a starring role for Celtic as they sealed the Treble Treble and quadruple Treble.
However, Christie looked out of sorts last season as the club’s historic ten-in-a-row bid collapsed and his decision to look for a fresh challenge South of the border was met with surprise.
What did Davie Provan say about Ryan Christie?
Ex-Celtic winger Davie Provan last week called into question the midfielders’ lack of ‘ambition’ which sparked a bitter text exchange between former teammate and Christie’s dad, Charlie.
The pair played alongside each other for Celtic during the 1980s, but Charlie Christie was furious with Provan’s claim that his son left Ange Postecoglou’s team for bigger wages.
Speaking to Go Radio, Provan said: “I got a message after the comments I made on the programme last week where I said it demonstrated a lack of ambition from Ryan Christie.
“His dad Charlie, who I played with at Celtic and was a teammate of mine, messaged me this week and was very unhappy that I suggested Ryan’s ambition was in question.
“Basically he was just trying to point out that he sees Bournemouth as a stepping stone and a chance to kick on.
“Obviously he sees himself in the English Premier League at some stage.
“I just think he could have got a better club and, to put it simply, I think he’s a better player than Bournemouth. I think he can get a much better club than Bournemouth.”
What did Frank McAvennie say about Ryan Christie?
Frank McAvennie also expressed his thoughts on Christie’s move, branding the player ‘lazy’ and insisting he will struggle in the second tier of English football.
The Hoops idol told Football Insider he was pleased to see Christie head out the Parkhead exit door and believes supporters won’t lose any sleep over his departure.
He said: “I think he was better off going. He has played but he was one of the ones who needed to move.
“I think he’s facing a challenge in the Championship, I really do. I think he’s going to struggle, I always said he wasn’t going to go to the Premier League.
“He was linked with Burnley and let me tell you, if he wasn’t wanted by Burnley, he would be at Burnley.
“He wouldn’t have taken a Championship move. In any case, I do honestly wish him the best but I’m glad he’s gone.
“We need players who are fully committed and he only used to turn up when he wanted to. He could be lazy.
“There were times we needed him and he wasn’t there or didn’t turn up.”
Christie was named among the substitutes on Saturday, making his debut from the bench in the 70th minute as the Cherries defeated Barnsley 3-0.
It remains to be seen whether he can re-discover the type of form he displayed under former Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers and it appears Hoops supporters had mixed views on his decision to leave.
Fan reactions to Ryan Christie leaving Celtic
Here is some reaction to the news on the club’s Twitter account.
@DKMacPhee said: “Ryan Christie’s a very talented player who gave us some great memories at Celtic. It’s not ideal to lose him but it had to happen eventually. He’s moving down the league ladder but presumably will earn more money at Bournemouth. Either way good luck to him and his new club.”
@JackMcgeary1 said: “People will be happy he’s gone but the things this man has done for our club deserves to be appreciated. Lazio, RB Leipzig, 2 amazing European memories off the top of my head.”
@BhoyinRed stated: “Why on earth would you let him leave when our squad is thin enough as it is??!!”
@chauzelmac said: “Many thanks Ryan for giving us 100% every time you pulled on the Hoops. You’ve had some magnificent times with our club in one of the greatest ever era’s & played a massive part in that. Good luck at your next club & thanks again.”
@steo_kelly89 admitted: “Signing for Bournemouth tells you all you need to know about Christie. Couldn’t wait to get out quick enough.”
@NickyNackyNoooo said: “Good! Anyone can see the last season or so he didn’t want to be here and intention of wanting to play never mind stay. So if playing for a Championship side is better for him than playing for Celtic then good luck to him.”
@rickysproule74 stated: “Good riddance he’s picked cash over medals.”
@thefellab said: “Should’ve been sold this time last year after he told the club he wasn’t signing a new deal. Enjoy the Championship - a massive step down from our club.”