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BOYATA MAKES A MEAL OF IT

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DEDRYCK BOYATA has praised his new Celtic team-mates for making him feel at home since his summer move from Manchester City.
The Belgian defender made his Hoops debut in the 2-0 midweek friendly win over Den Bosch and is set for another outing in today’s encounter against Dukla Prague at St Mirren Park.

Boyata is still searching for a place to call home in Glasgow, but for the time being he’s been able to dine out on the goodwill of his colleagues.

The 24-year-old has been a VIP guest at a variety of Celtic players’ homes over the past few days and reckons the welcome he has received has made his switch so much easier.

Boyata said: “I haven’t been out a lot because I have been in the hotel mainly trying to find myself a flat.

“I have had some really kind team-mates who have invited me for dinner or to stay with them in their houses.

“The likes of Virgil van Dijk, Mikael Lustig, Tom Rogic and Stefan Scepovic have all made it really easy for me, as has Nir Bitton who returned on Tuesday.

“They have said they would expect the same from others if they had also just come into the club.

“I was happy to win the first game. It was hard at the beginning, but we played well. In the end we won with something to spare.

“We have worked a lot this week on how the team will play and I got a lot of information at once. The way we play suits me. You never know who you are going to play alongside, but Virgil is a really good player and we all know that.

“I found it really good with him on Wednesday and, hopefully, that will continue to be the case.

“We will try bit after bit to show our qualities and that will come after we get our fitness back. But I don’t know what is going on with Virgil. I can’t say what is going to happen in the future.”

Two men who are certain to be around, however, are new signing Saidy Janko and winger Gary Mackay-Steven. The Swiss star was in the stand on Wednesday only hours after agreeing a four-year deal following his move from Mnachester United while Mackay-Steven ran riot in the 2-0 win.

Boyata added: “I didn’t play against Saidy in England but I have seen him play against City. He is a good and forward-thinking player.

“He is a full-back, but he likes to get forward and to attack and put in a lot of crosses.”

The international centre-half was also full of praise for Mackay-Steven. He said: “I haven’t played in a one-against-one against Gary, but he looks really sharp.

“If I see him running at me very quickly I think I will just jog back! Wingers like that, who are quick, can take people on and can score goals, are a real plus for the game.

“You always need the special players who can do something that the other players can’t.

“I am not the player who is going to take the player on one-versus-one to score the goal, but GMS is that type of player.

“I am a defender and if we play well then the score will still be 0-0, but if GMS plays well it could be 3-0 or 4-0.

“He is a really good prospect. I didn’t know him from before, but now I know all about him.

“Of course, Gary is important, but when you talk about the team you should be talking about everyone and I like everything we do in training and matches.

“It is a really good club who look to develop players. For Celtic, their first goal is to make the player better and that is why we are here.”

 
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