MIKAEL LUSTIG insists his potential departure from Celtic should have been handled better as he dropped the biggest hint yet that he is set to leave the club. 

The 32-year-old, who is currently on international duty with Sweden, is out of contract this summer and is set to make a decision over his future in the coming days. 

Lustig confirmed that Malmo have expressed an interest in tempting him back to his homeland, while he has previously acknowledged an approach from Stockholm outfit AIK. 

But after helping Celtic win 16 major trophies during his seven-and-a-half years at Parkhead, Lustig believes his situation could have been dealt with differently.

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Speaking after Sweden’s 3-0 defeat against Spain on Monday, Lustig told Sportbladet: “ The last few weeks have been tough. Not on the field, but off the pitch. 

“I am proud of how I have handled the situation and those closest to me, the players and the leaders at Celtic know what has happened. 

“It could have been handled differently, in terms of what has been said and what happened.”

Asked whether he laid the blame at the door of the Parkhead hierarchy, Lustig declined to comment.

Despite later posting what appeared to be a farewell video to Celtic supporters on Instagram, Lustig did, however, refuse to rule out extending his stay with the treble treble winners. 

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Lustig continued: “You should never say never. I love Celtic and never thought I would feel such a connection to a club. 

"I would never close that door. For me, that club is the fans and the job the players do for them. I have nothing but good things to say about Celtic.”

Nevertheless, Lustig is likely to have no shortage of options should his love affair with Celtic comes to an end. 

He added: “I know about Malmo’s interest but I would also consider going further afield. Today it is not only Europe where you can play, I have national teammates who have moved to the United States, the Middle East and Australia.”