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Bolingoli exits as Duffy makes instant impact

Ross County 0 Celtic 5


Head Bhoy: Shane Duffy celebrates after scoring on his Hoops debut

Head Bhoy: Shane Duffy celebrates after scoring on his Hoops debut


Boli Bolingoli

Boli Bolingoli

SNS Group via Getty Images

Head Bhoy: Shane Duffy celebrates after scoring on his Hoops debut

Boli Bolingoli, whose breach of coronavirus protocols led to two of Celtic's fixtures being postponed, has left Glasgow to sign for Turkish side Istanbul Basaksehir FK on a season-long loan.

The left-back flew to Spain and back last month without telling the Hoops then failed to quarantine himself for 14 days as required, before playing against Kilmarnock five days later.

Celtic's next two Premiership games were shelved as a consequence while boss Neil Lennon said the "maximum sanction" had been meted out to Bolingoli before adding the Belgian's representatives would look to move him on.

Bolingoli featured 29 times for the Glasgow giants after signing from Rapid Vienna last summer but he has now linked up with the Turkish champions, who say there is an option to make the move a permanent one next summer.

Celtic said: "Boli Bolingoli has joined Turkish side Istanbul Basaksehir FK on loan until the end of this season. Everyone at Celtic wishes Bolingoli well during his time at Istanbul Basaksehir FK."

The defender was given a three-game ban by the Scottish Football Association, with a further two-match penalty suspended until 28 February, as a result of his indiscretion.

Meanwhile, Shane Duffy promised Celtic fans there was more to come after his scoring debut in the 5-0 Premiership win over Ross County. An early Odsonne Edouard penalty and a poacher's goal from Albian Ajeti, the Switzerland striker who was making his first Celtic start, had the visitors two goals up by the interval in Dingwall against a side who caused plenty of problems for the champions.

Debutant Duffy, the Republic of Ireland defender and life-long Celtic fan who signed on loan from Brighton, headed in from a Callum McGregor corner to ensure a comfortable last half-hour.

Fellow defender Kristoffer Ajer grabbed a fourth from close range before substitute Patryk Klimala fired in to keep the champions six points behind leaders Rangers with two games in hand. Duffy, who played a club game for the first time since July, believes more matches can only help him as he looked forward to facing St Mirren in Paisley on Wednesday night. He said: "Yeah, it's really still pre-season for me, that's my third game. I had two for Ireland and now this.

"I'll only get better. I know I play my best when there's a run of games.

"I'm delighted there's a lot of games, hopefully I keep my spot, I know the more games I play I'll get fitter and sharper on the ball."

Celtic boss Neil Lennon noted that goalkeeper Vasilis Barkas, signed from AEK Athens in July, made several crucial saves to keep County at bay.

He said: "He showed his qualities so he can be really pleased with that as we are."

Belfast Telegraph