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Celtic: Frank McAvennie puzzled by Boli Bolingoli absence

Celtic: Frank McAvennie puzzled by Boli Bolingoli absence -Celtic News

Frank McAvennie says Ange Postecoglou may be overlooking his ‘best left-back’ in Boli Bolingoli. 

The lowdown

Bolingoli has been limited to just two starts in Celtic’s first 11 league games under Postecoglou.

Greg Taylor started the season as the Australian’s first choice in the top flight before sustaining a shoulder injury against Ross County in mid-September.

Postecoglou has looked to Josip Juranovic, a natural right-back, and teenager Adam Montgomery in addition to Bolingoli during that lay-off.

That indicates he’s not entirely convinced by a player who spent last season on loan at Turkish Super Lig outfit Istanbul Basaksehir.

To be fair to the manager, Bolingoli didn’t exactly set the world alight out on loan, starting only ten games and averaging just a 6.63 average match rating with the Turkish outfit.

The latest

McAvennie says he’s been impressed by Bolingoli’s performances so far this season and declared them far better than Taylor’s displays prior to his injury.

“I still think he’s our best left-back,” the ex-Hoop told Football Insider. “But the manager sees him every day, I don’t need to point out that he knows more than me.

“All I can say is what I have seen. Bolingoli has been great when I have seen him this season.

“I think he’s looked miles better than Taylor. For that reason, I was surprised he has been left out again.

“We are playing well at the moment and Postecoglou might not be comfortable with him in the new style.

“I doubt it’s a temperament issue. He’s not that kind of player. He’s strong in the tackle is all.”

The 61 year-old ended his comments rather bluntly: “I don’t get it.”

The verdict

How has Bolingoli fared when he has played? Well his average SofaScore rating stands at a commendable 7.0, although it does rank him slightly below Juranovic and Taylor.

Overall, he’s won the majority of his defensive duels, but his attacking output was very limited in those games, with no key passes and only one accurate cross recorded. That could be the stylistic concern McAvennie alludes to.

That said, one could argue that having a right-footer in the position is a bigger issue from that point of view, restricting the team’s width and the full-back’s ability to bomb down the flank and whip crosses in.

Seeing a right-back selected ahead of him will surely put a significant dent in Bolingoli’s confidence, and perhaps tempt the defender to find a new home elsewhere when the transfer window rolls around.

In other news, read this injury expert’s verdict on Christopher Jullien.

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Article title: Celtic: Frank McAvennie puzzled by Boli Bolingoli absence

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