Dedryck Boyata is Celtic’s best defender, it’s that simple.
Although the Belgian stopper’s Celtic career has been controversial, they’re a much better team when he’s in the starting XI.
Boyata inexplicably downed tools and effectively cost Celtic a place in the Champions League with his no-show in Athens. It was all but certain that Boyata would be moving on with clubs in England and Spain linked with big money moves.
Celtic reportedly rejected bids from Fulham and Sevilla in the summer, and Boyata decided to vote with his feet.
He came from nowhere to play a big part in the invincible treble season. The Belgian had been rotting in the reserves while Celtic qualified for the Champions League and won the Betfred Cup.
Proving his worth to the team
Brendan Rodgers commented on Boyata’s desire to get into the team, citing redoubled efforts in training. However the Celtic fans have never really trusted the big centre half.
There’s a sense that Boyata always has a mistake in him, including his disastrous showing at Ibrox in March this year.
Couple that with his no-show in Athens, and the Green Brigade’s ‘not fit to wear the jersey’ banner directed at him, Boyata had a tough job getting the fans back onside.
As soon as he was back in the side, Celtic’s defence looked much more secure. Boyata has been the no-nonsense dominating centre half we all know he can be.
In January he’s free to speak to other clubs, and can leave for free in the summer. Celtic have to come to some sort of arrangement where Boyata commits his long term future to the club.
If they can secure his services, that guarantees them a bumper pay-day when the do decide to move him on. That way everyone wins.