THE saying goes that you should never judge a man until you have walked a mile in his shoes. Or, perhaps, played 90 minutes in his football boots.

That is the view of Christopher Jullien in any case, with the Celtic defender saying that critics of his team this season have no idea what it is like trying to perform under the pressure that is placed on their shoulders.

The defender has never doubted the footballing ability of those who go between those white lines for Celtic, but he admits that it was between the ears where their troubles lay during the poor run of form that saw them exit the Europa League and fall behind in the race for the Premiership title.

With four consecutive wins in all competitions and a quadruple Treble now up the cuff though, Jullien believes that the Celtic player’s minds are clear once more, and firmly focused on the job at hand.

“This is football and sometimes it doesn’t work as you want,” Jullien said. “Fans or other people are watching the games on the TV and sometimes they don’t see the work that we are doing to try and make it better.

“But I also think that 80 per cent of football is in the head. It’s in the brain. A professional footballer has confidence when he is thinking positive. Everything that he is doing is just easy. The game feels easy.

“Sometimes people can look into it and think that it’s always easy. Maybe it is when you have the confidence, but when you do not have it, sometimes the game can be really hard.

“You don’t play the game yourself. You are playing with 11 and, when things are not going in the right direction or you are not really on the same page at times, it can be different.

“Nine in a row and winning so many trophies is very difficult, but people are thinking that it is just easy because it is Celtic. That’s what the coach tells us every day, that it’s not easy. He says to us that people outside think it is easy, but it’s not. We know it.

“Sometimes I would like to give my boots to other people and let them come onto the field and see what the pressure feels like.

“Football is not always easy. It can be hard. It is the job that we do and we are paid for it.

“We have no problem with that now. I am now 27 years old and I just learn about these things every day.

“With the experience that I have got now, I realise that sometimes you just have to go into your bubble and get through things and get out of any bad run and go up the way.

“I’m feeling good on the field, but you can see that everyone is feeling good.

“When we are all going in the one direction, when we just think positively and we count on each other, football is easy.

“With the quality we have, we can do it, but everyone was questioning what we have because we had a bad run.

“But now I hope and I can’t wait for the next games because I am really confident about the quality of the side and can’t wait for the results.”

It didn’t help Jullien’s state of mind during Celtic’s recent rocky patch that he was largely unable to do anything about it, having spent six weeks out of the side through injury.

Now feeling fully match fit again though, he thinks that he and the team as a whole can show their ability to bounce back from adversity.

“It was tough watching when I was out,” he said. “It’s just how it is when you are stuck in front of the TV. It’s hard, but I was trying to stay in touch with my-mates and tell them I was still there with them even though I couldn’t play.

“I still have the confidence we would turn things around. It was definitely a difficult time. And I know in football there are some bad runs sometimes and you just have to bounce back.

“That’s the quality you can see in a good footballer. The quality to bounce back when things are not so good.

“I really have the feeling that we are now on a good vibe.

“Can I sense a freedom now? Yeah, you can see it now. You can see it on the field. You can see it seems easy when everyone is positive and we go in the one direction. One and two touch, balls down the sides, runs, go in front of the goal, score.

“Football can be easy and simple if you are positive and feeling in a good way. When you are on a bad run, it’s not quite like that. It’s football. That’s how it goes.”