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  • Manager wants Dedryck Boyata to prove his staying power

    Manager wants Dedryck Boyata to prove his staying power

    By: Martin Dalziel on 24 Jan, 2017 10:01

  • DEDRYCK Boyata’s game-time in the 3-0 win over Albion Rovers on Sunday came as a result of his consistent hard work on the training field, according to Brendan Rodgers, and the Hoops boss insists it’s down to the Belgian internationalist to keep it up if he wants more minutes at Celtic.

    Signed from Manchester City in summer 2015, Boyata has only played twice under the current regime, including Sunday's game, but in both those performances, the defender has impressed his manager, who said the 26-year-old has all the attributes to succeed at Paradise, but stressed that nothing comes for free at the top of the game.

    “He’s played two games for me, both on the astroturf field, and he’s done really well,” he said. “He didn’t have a lot to do but what he had to do, he dealt very well with.

    “Sometimes those are the types of games where you have a great deal of defending to do, you can lose your concentration and then you can make silly mistakes that you shouldn’t.

    “He hasn’t had many chances but what I’ve been impressed with are his qualities in training. He came into the game and showed all the qualities I like. He’s 26 and has to be getting to a stage now where he needs to want to be one of the two centre-halfs and I think he’s wanted to be that, but through injury at the beginning of the season and the form of others he hasn’t been able to.

    “He put himself in the team, he’s now got to try to stay in the team. He has all the attributes that I really like. He’s tall, good in the air, brave, he has personality, technically he’s strong, he can play off both feet, he passes it well, he steps in with the ball at the right moments. He has every tool to be a top-class centre-half at a big club.

    “He’s played at Manchester City as a young player so he understands pressure and now has a chance here maybe to stake a claim in the team, but that will come from his training application. He’s been brilliant in training and I was pleased for him and now it’s up to him.

    “In every position there’s competition here so every day players have to be at their best because if they’re not, then there are other players to come in and take their place. We’ve seen that over my time here behind the scenes, the real competition we have in training, so it means everyone playing has to be at their best because there’s someone else to come in, and that’s the way you want it.

    “You have to push every day in training and be as competitive as you can, try to be the best you can be and it not only improves your own game, but improves others around you.”

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