CHRISTOPHER Jullien says that his team-mates ensured that he understood the importance of sealing a ninth successive title for Celtic this season as soon as he arrived at the club.

The centre-half completed a move to Parkhead from Toulouse last summer for a fee of around £7 million and while he had to wait a while to make his debut for the club, the 27-year-old said that Neil Lennon’s patient approach to introducing him into the first team has paid dividends.

“When I signed they talked about it [nine-in-a-row],” Jullien told BBC Sportsound. “The achievement that they did just before I arrived was crazy, it was unbelievable.

“To have achieved nine-in-a-row and to have 10 in mind, it’s a great goal. It will be difficult for sure but it’s a target that we want and we are going to do our best to do it.

“When I arrived, I arrived late. I was in good shape, good physically and I just had to be patient. The coach helped me with this too. Sometimes he said to me, ‘Just be patient. Feel comfortable with your team-mates, feel comfortable on the field with training and everything’.

“When I went into the team I just felt so comfortable and all my team-mates made me comfortable on the field. After I started I just wanted to play every game. Scottish football is a little bit different than French football, but my team-mates and all the staff made me feel comfortable so it was easier after that.”

As a defender, Jullien is of course primarily focused on keeping the opposition at bay. But there are two moments for his debut season in Glasgow’s east end that will stick out for supporters – the late winner at home to Lazio in the group stages of the Europa League, and the deciding goal in the League Cup final against Rangers.

“These two moments - I can’t put words into it,” he said. “When I think about it I still have goosebumps sometimes. The goal against Lazio was my first goal for Celtic and to give the team a victory, it was a great game. That was unbelievable. But the goal following that was just a massive, massive moment. It was something else.

“It was more meaningful because there was a trophy afterwards. The game was not on our side because we were not having a good game. It was really hard but we showed the mentality of Celtic, of this massive club, why we keep winning trophies. We didn’t have a great game and we weren’t good but we were efficient at the other side of the field.

“I have to mention Fraser [Forster] because I’ve never seen a performance like that. That was the best performance from a goalkeeper that I’ve witnessed on the field.

“I think that was the most difficult game of the season because it was the final and there was a lot of pressure to win the cup. You just have to see the moment of the whistle at the end of the game and you can see the face of everyone how hard and how good this game was for everyone at the club.”

Only two players currently on the books at Celtic – Scott Brown and James Forrest – have been with the club every step of the way during their record-equalling nine successive titles. Brown has played a bigger role than any other player as the champions aim for a tenth next season, with Jullien insisting that he has never played alongside anyone quite like the long-serving midfielder.

Jullien said: “Celtic have achieved nine in a row and it’s a massive achievement, and Scott Brown has been part of all of this. Since he arrived at the club, I think he has done unbelievable work. To have him as my captain is great and he makes my job easier.

“He’s a leader and I have never seen a leader like that. He gives so much energy and you can’t go below that. You have to follow him and give everything. You give everything and he gives that power to everyone and it’s great to play with him.”

When Jullien reflects on the 2019/20 league campaign, however, he says that there are two games early on that stand out for him – and that they helped provide Celtic with the drive and determination to pull away from their rivals in the title race.

“At Rangers away at the beginning of September, the atmosphere and the feeling of the game, I could feel that the rivalry is such a big thing in this country," he said. "And the game against Livingston – in my mind when I arrived, and I saw the potential that we had in the team, how we were playing – I really thought we could win every game this season.

“But when we fell for the first time I was like, ‘OK, now I understand why every team goes after us, why they want to beat the champions’. I understood the mentality that all the teams were going to have when we were playing away. It was a fall and it was really difficult but that’s what makes champions: when you get up after a fall.

“Every bad step that we had this year we came back. After the defeat in December, we went away in January and came back in unbelievable form. I don’t want to say I wanted to lose that game because I wanted to win but I think there can be a good loss. For me, that game that we lost, made us understand that we have to work more.”