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‘NOT A TIME TO RELAX,’ INSISTS HISTORY BHOY GORDON

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CRAIG GORDON insists he is too busy focusing on the future to reflect on his trophy-laden six years at Celtic.

The 37-year-old one-time Scotland international goalkeeper became a free agent at the start of the month when his contract expired.

The nine-in-a-row champions have made an offer on reduced terms for Gordon to remain at Parkhead, but he has knocked back the proposed extension.

St Mirren boss Jim Goodwin, on the look-out for a new shotstopper after Vaclav Hldaky quit the Paisley outfit, has already had talks with the towering netminder about joining the Buddies.

Gordon, though, is in no rush to commit himself and, in the meantime, has not ruled out remaining at the champions for their tilt at 10 in a row.

The former £9million shotstopper, speaking to the Scottish Sun, said: “If I’ve played my last game for Celtic, and my time is up, then I’ll leave here knowing that I was fortunate enough to play in a great team that won almost everything.

“It was something that most players can only dream of. These things never last forever and I’m just grateful to have been part of a very successful and special team.

MEDALLION MAN…Craig Gordon following a Btefred League Cup success.

“Now isn’t the time to dwell on it, though. That probably won’t happen for a few years.

“I would imagine there will be celebration dinners in years to come where we’ll all get together and remember the good times.

“It wasn’t just the success, we also had a style of football to go with it. It was really something which probably hadn’t been seen in Scotland before. So there’s huge pride.

“Right now, though, I’m focused on what comes next. I don’t think about what’s happened in the past. I’m striving for the next thing.

“I can reflect on my career when it’s all over and that’s not for yet. If I stopped and thought about what I’ve done in my career I feel I could perhaps lose the edge I have.

“So, it’s not a time to relax. There will be plenty time for that when I eventually retire.

“That’s when I will look at the medals I’ve won and the memories I’ve made.”

FIRST-CLASS DELIVERY…Craig Gordon starts a Celtic move with a quick throw in the 1-0 Betfred League Cup semi-final win over Rangers in 2016.

Neil Lennon has already stated he wants the popular Celt to stay in the east end of Glasgow and Gordon added: “My contract expired last week — we’ve both known that all year — and there were no talks at all during the season.

“Perhaps everyone was too focused on the team trying to win the league than getting the guys who were out of contract fixed up for next season.

“It wasn’t until after my deal expired that I got any inclination Celtic wanted to talk and maybe extend things.

“I spent most of the season on the bench, that was my role when Fraser Forster came in. I’ll be honest and say that I wasn’t particularly happy about it.

“I thought I’d get the chance to get back in and make that position my own when Scott Bain got injured.

“So, it was a low point for me, when they went out and signed another goalkeeper to come in and take that place.

“I had to deal with that and get on with it throughout the season, which wasn’t easy. You have to take your hat off to Fraser, though, because he had an excellent season. He came in and was so consistent through the whole campaign.

“I need to give him credit, but I wish it was me, that’s the truth of it. I wish I had that opportunity to play for Celtic every week.”

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Editor

Acclaimed author Alex Gordon wrote the biography of Scotland international legend Denis Law, entitled 'King and Country'. He is a former columnist with World Soccer magazine and Scottish correspondent of respected European journal L'Equipe.

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