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By ESPN Staff
Sep 17, 2009

Defender Caldwell warns Bhoys over contract

Gary Caldwell has warned Celtic he is ready to walk away from the club next summer if they fail to meet his demands over a new contract.

Caldwell's current deal expires at the end of the season and he could sign a pre-contract agreement with another side as early as January.

The 27-year-old insists he wants to stay at Celtic and has expressed his frustration after talks with them broke down.

"My agent went in and asked for figures which weren't anything near the highest paid player at the club,'' Caldwell said. "They were on a par with the players who are playing week in, week out, which I have done now over the last four years. I've proved I'm an asset to the football club and we asked for figures which fell in line with that.

"If the club say that's too much then I think they are kidding themselves on that they can pay others a lot more than they can pay me. That's their opinion of me as a footballer and we have to move on.''

Caldwell, who is preparing for tonight's Europa League opener at Hapoel Tel-Aviv, claims Hoops chief executive Peter Lawwell has made no attempt to resurrect contract talks.

He said: "I need to know what is happening. If the contract runs out, it runs out. That's life and you have to move on. It's something the club will have to answers to because I don't know.

"As I've said in the past, I want to play for Celtic and want to sign for Celtic. That's always been my stance and it's the club who have not been forthcoming. Allowing my contract to run down could probably be good for me financially, but I have a young family and we want to stay in Scotland with Celtic.

"It's gone very quiet, though. If you are asking when my agent last had talks with Peter, it was a long time ago - a long time ago. It was left in the club's hands. Since then, nothing. I've spoken to the manager about it, but what was said will be kept between us.''

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