Celtic loanee Jason Denayer confirms intention to return to Manchester City

The Belgian has a dream of playing alongside Vincent Kompany.

After early-season struggles, Celtic are back on top form and looking to compete for major honours on several fronts. They remain in the Europa League, where they face Inter Milan in the coming weeks. They are also in the Scottish League Cup final and still competing in the Scottish FA Cup. Top of the SPL table, business as usual for The Bhoys.

One of the key reasons behind their recent success, however, has been a solid defence. Celtic have not conceded a goal in competitive football since the 2-1 defeat against Dundee United on 21st December. So far 2015 has a clean slate.

That is down to the excellence of Celtic's regular defenders Virgil van Dijk and Jason Denayer. The latter was brought in on loan from Manchester City at the start of the season and has gone on to become a vital member of the team. The Belgian's future is therefore a hot topic among Celtic fans - who are desperate for him to remain at the club.

Unfortunately, it looks as though that will not be the case.

Denayer has been quoted by The Herald as saying he is hoping to play alongside countryman and idol Vincent Kompany at Manchester City next season:

"I hope next season to be ready to play for City.

"If I ever get the chance to play alongside Vincent Kompany then I know I will have made it.

"I get compared with him now, but that's only because we play for City and are Belgian.

"I don't think we even have similar styles and if I want to make a name for myself rather than this image of the 'new Kompany.' But my view is that I will return to City next season."

Denayer went on to discuss how much he has enjoyed his time at Celtic, stating:

"The Celtic manager called me in the summer and said he wanted me to fit into his plans.

"It's gained me experience of playing in the Champions League.

"I knew it would be difficult to get a game for City so going on loan was my best option.

"I scored in my first match for Celtic and I immediately felt like I belonged there."

The saving grace for Celtic fans is Manchester City's already vast resources and options. Denayer may want first-team football at City, but the Premier League side may have other ideas for him.

Regardless of whether he stays or goes, he will always be fondly remembered at Celtic Park.

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch