Celtic duo set for Monday test vs world class defence; Champions League prep

By John McGinley

June 5, 2022

Celtic duo Kyogo Furuhashi and Daizen Maeda will face a stiff international test on Monday when Japan go up against Brazil in a friendly.

Both players came off the bench for Japan in a weakened side vs Paraguay on Thursday, but manager Hajime Moriyasu will surely be going full-strength for the glamour tie with tomorrow’s South American visitors.

That doesn’t guarantee a starting berth for Kyogo or Maeda, but they’re almost certain to be heavily involved throughout the 90 minutes. That’s a good thing for the players and for Celtic.

Photo by Koji Watanabe/Getty Images

Ahead of our UEFA Champions League group stage campaign in the autumn, testing their attacking instincts, movement and decision-making up against a world-class defence will do them no harm at all.

Brazil didn’t take their friendly against South Korea on Thursday lightly, fielding a strong eleven that included a back four of immense quality.

Alex Sandro of Juventus, Marquinhos of Paris Saint-Germain, Thiago Silva of Chelsea and Dani Alves of Barcelona all started the 5-1 victory.

All four players will be in the Champions League draw with the Bhoys on August 25th and are potential opponents from both Pot 1 and Pot 2.

Kyogo and Daizen were both impressive in their debut season at Celtic but next term is another step up for them and a chance to prove themselves at a higher level.

With six goals from nine matches in Europe during 2021/22, Kyogo in particular looks well primed to shine brightly on the Champions League stage. Maeda also managed to get himself on the scoresheet against Bodo/Glimt.

It’ll certainly be intriguing to check on their progress with Japan this week, with Ghana also opponents on Friday night.

Good luck Bhoys!

In other news, Report: Jota to Celtic on track, Ange optimistic.