Chris Sutton shares what he’s noticed about Reo Hatate after Celtic games lately

By Milo Clay

February 28, 2023

Chris Sutton says that he’s noticed Reo Hatate putting in some extra yards on the pitch after Celtic games this season. 

The Bhoys picked up their first trophy of the season on Sunday as they beat their Glasgow rivals Rangers 2-1 in the Scottish League Cup final. 

Kyogo Furuhashi bagged a brace to ensure there was no way back for Michael Beale’s side, despite a consolation goal from Alfredo Morelos. 

Photo by Matthew Ashton – AMA/Getty Images

Celtic’s Japanese contingent have been outstanding this season and they played a key role in the win at Hampden Park on Sunday. 

And Sutton has been speaking about Hatate on BBC Radio 5 Live after the cup final victory. 

Sutton on what he’s noticed about Hatate this season 

Speaking on The Monday Night Club, Sutton labelled Hatate an ‘outstanding’ player and shared what he’s noticed about the midfielder while covering Celtic this season.

“Reo Hatate is an outstanding midfield player and has only been at Celtic for a year and a bit. They’re [Japanese players] students of the game, they really are, they are the perfect professionals in many aspects,” the former Celtic man said. 

He added: “One really noticeable thing from the games I’ve covered at Celtic is after games, Hatate is jogging round the pitch with an assistant and warming down. He is so meticulous in his approach and I don’t know whether we can just characterise this as a Japanese thing. 

“But there was an interview in the paper last week with Kyogo Furuhashi in the German papers. He’s scored 24 goals this season and he’s playing everything down, but he’s always talking about hard-work, the need to get better – saying ‘I’m not a great player yet, I need to work on my positional play, the timing of runs’. That’s a fantastic attitude as a starting point to have.” 

Sutton couldn’t speak more highly of the Japanese players that have made the switch to Celtic Park during Ange Postecoglou’s reign. 

“All the Japanese players at Celtic have really conducted themselves in an impeccable manner and when you think about huge transfer fees now, you know £25 million buys a really average player. Celtic have been stealing these players, essentially, from the Japanese market,” he added. 

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Hatate has been truly outstanding this season, alongside the likes of Kyogo and Daizen Maeda. 

The 25-year-old has registered nine goal involvements in 10 Scottish Premiership appearances since the return of football after the World Cup. 

He’s really started to provide in the final third of late and as Sutton has pointed out, his attitude on and off the pitch is exceptional. Long may it continue.

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