Dedryck Boyata pleased with Celtic camaraderie during Dubai training camp

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Celtic defender Dedryck Boyata has enjoyed the chance to get to know his teammates better in Dubai.

Brendan Rodgers’ side are currently on a warm-weather training camp as the Ladbrokes Premiership takes a mid-season hiatus with the Hoops top of the table and into the knockout stages of the Europa League.

The camp has given the players the chance to bond as well as brush up on their fitness levels, and Boyata has enjoyed getting to know his new teammate Marvin Compper.

The defender completed his move to Glasgow from RB Leipzig, and Boyata told Celtic TV: “I didn’t know him before, but from talking to him, he speaks French as well which is a good thing, and he speaks a few other languages so he is a good person.

“He is a bit older than me and has good experience so I think it’s a big plus for us.”

He added: “Being in a city like Dubai with the good weather, we have the time to enjoy each other and it’s good for the team bonding.

“Especially with the players we don’t really know, on holiday it’s different and we share a room which is good.

“It’s never easy at training camps, especially when you have been totally off for a week.

“I’ve had long sessions, but it can only be good for us to get going and be better.”

Although they are currently training in warm climes, it will be different in February when they travel to Russia to take on Zenit St Petersburg in the Europa League.

The fact they are still playing in Europe represents something of a success for Celtic, who at the start of the season targeted European involvement after Christmas.

“It will be a hard game,” the defender admitted. “The weather will be unbelievable, but for us we wanted to be in Europe and if we can go even further it will be great, but it won’t be easy and we will be against my old manager (Roberto Mancini).”