Bolingoli gets off lightly with five match ban for Spanish trip protocol breach

Boli Bolingoli has been handed a five match ban from the Scottish FA after his clandestine trip to Spain for an overnight stay after Celtic’s opening game of the season against Hamilton.  The Belgian defender, a £3million signing from Rapid Vienna last July, took advantage of the two days off given to the first team squad by Neil Lennon after the 5-1 opener victory, to sneak off on an Easyjet flight to the Spanish sunshine, where he apparently met up with a female friend.

On his return he failed to advise Celtic of the trip and then went on to train within the Celtic bubble and even worse featured in the 1-1 draw against Kilmarnock, coming off the bench for the closing minutes.

He failed to observe any quarantine guidelines and broke all the rules that Celtic had so carefully followed.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon warned Scottish football that Bolingoli’s action, coming after the breach by Aberdeen players over that same weekend, meant that the game was on it’s final warning as she issued a yellow card. The warning was clear.

Celtic suffered the immediate postponement of two league matches, away to St Mirren and at home to Aberdeen and as a result have to play catch-up in this the most important domestic season in the club’s history. And as we pointed out on Wednesday night, those two extra games could have made all the difference in sharpness and getting up to speed in the Champions League match against the Hungarian Champions.

“Celtic defender Boli Bolingoli has been handed a five-match ban – two of which are suspended until February 28. The left-back broke Scottish Government COVID19 rules after travelling to Spain and failing to quarantine.” Sky Sports man Anthony Joseph tweeted. 

“Aberdeen players Jonny Hayes, Scott McKenna, Sam Cosgrove, Craig Bryson, Bruce Anderson, Dylan McGeouch, Matty Kennedy and Michael Devlin have been handed a three-game ban – suspended until February 28, for breaching Covid19 rules.” he also tweeted. 

Today at his Media Conference Neil Lennon didn’t completely rule out re-introducing Bolingoli to the first team squad. However it seems unlikely that there will be any way back for the player who the support have completely turned against.

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About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor, who has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email editor@thecelticstar.co.uk

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