Neil Lennon wants to keep Dedryck Boyata at Celtic
Despite reports yesterday confirming that Dedryck Boyata was off to Hertha Berlin, Celtic boss Neil Lennon dismissed them.
He then stated that he wanted to keep the Belgian at Parkhead after the summer. Boyata’s contract is up at the end of the season, and he may have played his last game for the club after a hamstring injury against Rangers.
He was missing from the 0-0 home draw against Livingston yesterday. Despite that, he was still very much in the spotlight regarding potential summer plans.
But Lennon confirmed in the Daily Record that he still wants to sign Boyata up should he be the manager next season.
“I’m not aware of that (agreement with Hertha), Dedryck was at the game today. I wouldn’t be surprised if there is interest in him but we are still hopeful that we can persuade him to stay, which would be great for everyone.”
Boyata’s move appears imminent
It’s difficult to see anything other than Boyata moving on this summer. You can’t forget what his agent said earlier this season about signing a new deal “not being an option” for the Belgian.
Surely, if Celtic were going to be keeping Boyata, a new contract would’ve been signed by now. Leaving it so last-minute wouldn’t be in the best interests of anyone. Given the bickering between the club and Boyata’s agent too, there’s clearly some tension there.
Boyata has let Celtic down on too many occasions this season. The AEK Athens fiasco won’t just go away. Regardless of what you think of Brendan Rodgers, he had no reason to lie about Boyata’s availability for that one.
Added to that there was the teasing of a new contract on social media. He also allows his agent to come out and open up on his future.
Even against Rangers last Sunday when Boyata threw himself to the deck despite there being a dangerous attack on for the Ibrox side. At the very least, he should’ve stayed on his feet so Rangers didn’t have an extra man in the box.
It’s difficult to feel that Boyata wants to stay. The cards he’s played over the course of the season haven’t helped, and if Lennon does somehow get the job, a new centre-back should be his top priority.