Ex team-mate reveals: This is why Boyata would have wanted Celtic move

Manchester City have allowed another talented Belgian international to move to Celtic, with Dedryck Boyata completing a permanent transfer on Tuesday.

Celtic have signed Dedryck Boyata on a permanent deal from Manchester City, with the central defender replacing fellow City youngster Jason Denayer, who is leaving Glasgow after a superb loan spell.

His teammate at Bolton, Michael O'Halloran, has told the Daily Record that Boyata will have been considering two factors as he mulled a switch to Celtic from the Citizens.

The 24-year-old one time Belgian cap will feel that regular football in a side that is sure to be challenging for silverware is much better for his international hopes than the scraps of football he has to live off at Manchester City.

He only has to look to his compatriot Denayer, who excelled while on loan at Celtic Park last season. The 19-year-old has arguably jumped ahead of Boyata in the national team, and returns to Manchester as one of the most promising central defenders in the Premier League.

“Denayer enhanced his reputation at Celtic, winning the title and the League Cup, and gained his first Belgium cap on the back of his performances," said O'Halloran.

“Dedryck, like Jason, found it hard to break into Manchester City’s first team because of the talent available to that club.

“So I am sure he’ll have watched Jason’s progress last season at Celtic with interest.

“He will be thinking he too can come to Scotland and become a better player."

O'Halloran also points to the fact that Boyata will be eager to have a chance at regular European football with the Scottish champions, something that would be essential to getting back into Marc Wilmots Red Devils squad.

"He has the carrot of the Champions League which is a massive lure for any player," added the Saints man.

“Dedryck will also be aware if Celtic can qualify for the group stages then that bigger platform could help earn him a recall to the Belgian international side.

“Playing in the Champions League and trying to get back in the Belgium squad will have been uppermost in his mind.

“Those will be the two main reasons why Boyata has chosen to move to Celtic. It is a great chance for him to play regular first-team football once again at this stage of his career.”

Boyata has made just 34 appearances in the City first team in six years at the club, having never approached a regular role in the side, while Denayer turned out for Celtic 44 times last season.

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