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‘BOYATA WILL LEARN AND I WANT HIM TO STAY AT CELTIC,’ RODGERS

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BRENDAN RODGERS reckons Dedryck Boyata will learn from his moment of hesitancy that gifted Bayern Munich their first goal at Parkhead.

And the Celtic boss revealed the champions are eager for the Belgian international centre-back to commit his long-term future to the Parkhead side.

Rodgers said: “If you hesitate at this level, you get punished – simple as that. Kingsley Coman – if there’s a faster player out there I’ve yet to see him – makes these runs across the line and if you are indecisive, you get punished. But Dedryck will learn.

“He has been brilliant for me since he came in, but it’s a level where you have to go and be aggressive and from that he’ll learn. Just go and head it.”

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On the former Manchester City star’s contract situation, Rodgers said: “Dedryck would go into his final year next summer. I would love him to stay.

“His representatives have spoken to Peter Lawwell and I’ve also spoken to Dedryck.

“He understands what I think, but you always have to respect the player. We will chat again.

“However, he is a player I rate highly and, like all the boys, he is seeing a really exciting period at Celtic. They want to be in this cycle and lots of them have signed up to be part of it.

“There is nothing yet on Dedryck’s contract, but I would like him to extend it, very much so.”

Reflecting on the Champions League exit, the Irishman added: “We had a couple of great moves and you could argue we had clearer chances than they had, first-half at least.

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“They get the goal out of nothing. Then we had a great move where we nearly scored in the six-yard box. Then another chance for Stuart Armstrong where James Forrest plays a great ball in and he has to get contact on it.

“But if you are going to lose a game – and lose it to one of the top five clubs in the world – at least lose it in a way where you can say you can say you are proud of the players and the belief they showed.”

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