Under the tutelage of Brendan Rodgers, Celtic carved territorial dominance once again last season as they clinched the Scottish domestic treble. However, their track record in the Champions League has been far from convincing for quite a while now. To continue their domestic form as well to better their credentials in Europe, they must try to keep their prized assets and bring reinforcements into their arsenal.
One of the highly rated stars in Rodgers’ armoury is their experienced defender in Dedryck Boyata. He played a pivotal role last season, making 39 appearances across all competitions for the Hoops and his endeavours with his club earned him a place in Belgium’s World Cup side. Boyata helped his national side in finishing third by playing his heart out during the chances he got, thus earning rave reviews from the football fraternity.
Boyata has stepped into the last 12 months of his contract with the Glasgow based outfit and is attracting interest from various clubs. According to a recent report by The Scottish Sun, Boyata has emerged as a subject of interest for Lazio, Fulham and Lyon. The French side recently sanctioned the sale of Mouctar Diakhaby for £15million to Valencia and certainly have the financial muscle to attract Boyata.
The former Liverpool manager is determined to keep Boyata at the Celtic Park and is planning to chalk fresh contract talks with him. Boyata is currently on a holiday in Greece after being given time off following his exploits in the World Cup with Belgium. Rodgers is apparently not keen to recall him early despite his side’s troublesome defensive crisis in the Champions League.
A move to Fulham or Lyon might tempt the 27-year-old, as in the case of the former, he will have the chance to ply his trade in the toughest league in the world whereas if he makes a move to the latter, he will have better chances in the Champions League. As a player, he will not be blamed for trying to establish himself in a league tougher than Scottish Premiership and his exit shouldn’t come as a surprise.
Boyata is about to attain his peak age as a defender and thus, Celtic should leave no stone unturned to try to keep him in their ranks. However, if Boyata refuses to sign a new deal, selling him in this transfer market will be a tempting option for the Celtic manager rather than lose him for free a year from now. It is unclear whether the defender will extend his stay or not, but it goes without saying that Rodgers has a tough task on his hands.