Celtic midfielder Ryan Christie has admitted he would welcome a return to Aberdeen after impressing during his short-term loan deal this season.

The 22-year-old playmaker headed to Pittodrie in January after making just seven starts under Brendan Rodgers.

Christie went on to score seven goals and produced three assists in 15 appearances for the Dons.

He will return to Celtic Park this summer but is open to playing for Aberdeen again next term.

Asked whether a return to Pittodrie could be on the cards, Christie said that he had enjoyed his time at the club.

“If that is what it comes to, then it is definitely an option I will keep open,” he told The Evening Express.

“Right now in my head it is all about doing as well as I can in pre-season then we will take it from there.”

Christie, who has nine Scotland Under-21 appearances to his name, will join up with the Celtic squad after the Scottish Cup final against Aberdeen on Saturday.

Under the terms of his loan arrangement, he is not able to play in the match – and he will not even be at Hampden Park watching – meaning Aberdeen fans could have seen the last of the talented midfielder in action for them.

If that is the case, he left them with good memories, bagging two goals and creating another in a 6-0 demolition of Partick Thistle as the Dons’ finished runners-up to Celtic in the Scottish Premiership.

The Aberdeen fans who were chanting, “Sign him up”, as he scored his second of the game would doubtless love to see him back in their colours, but nothing is decided just yet.

“I will go back to Celtic a better player, and my time spent at Aberdeen will definitely stand me in good stead,” Christie added.

“I will go and enjoy my holidays and come back raring to go at Celtic then see what happens after that.”

Christie moved to Celtic from Inverness Caledonian Thistle in 2015, although he was immediately loaned back for the 2015-16 season following the £500,000 transfer.

With two years still to run on his Celtic contract, Rodgers would need to sanction any move to Aberdeen.

However, as there are several midfielders ahead of Christie in the pecking order at the Glasgow club and first-team football is on offer at Pittodrie, the move is one that could benefit both parties.

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