Football Manager players baffled as Celtic January signing left out of update

By Euan Davidson

February 26, 2022

Picture the scene: you’re a Celtic supporter, who’s patiently waited for the newest update of Football Manager.

With the Bhoys having signed some real talents in January, and underrated players from the game’s release surely getting a bump in their ratings, you want to play full ‘Angeball’, and win everything you can in the first season. Celtic already have Kyogo, a rejuvenated Tom Rogic and Anthony Ralston, Joe Hart, Reo Hatate, but hang on: where’s Daizen Maeda?

After the newest update of the enormously successful Football Manager series was released yesterday [Football Manager], a lot of Celtic fans have asked the same thing. Just where is Daizen Maeda?

Photo by ANDY BUCHANAN/AFP via Getty Images

Here’s where things get a bit tricky. Technically, Maeda is on loan to us from Yokohama F Marinos. Sports Interactive, the company who make the ubiquitous managerial sim, don’t have the rights to the J-League, or the Japanese national team.

Therefore, since Daizen Maeda is strictly speaking, a Yokohama F Marinos player, therein lies the issue. The makers of the game explained [Football Manager]: “Japanese league players aren’t in FM due to licensing and although he’s on loan at Celtic his rights are to his parent club.

“We’re already investigating this and will look to update this as soon as possible.”

Worry not, though; every other player signed by Celtic in January is available in the game. It does take away from the realism, however. And realism, in Football Manager, is utterly imperative.

That is, until about 10 seasons in, when your son appears in the Youth Academy.

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Football Manager provides unfortunate headache for Celtic fans over Daizen Maeda

At least it’s an issue that’ll get fixed before long. If Sports Interactive don’t have the licenses for Japanese clubs, then it’s an understandable problem.

Still, you’d want Daizen Maeda in your team. The joint-top scorer in last season’s J-League campaign, Maeda has been an instant hit at Celtic.

Already, in just 626 minutes of football, Maeda has scored 4 goals [Transfermarkt]. He broke his duck at Celtic almost instantly, scoring against Shaun Maloney’s Hibernian, who happen to be our opponents tomorrow. Fast, with cunning movement and endless stamina, he’s been impressive thus far.

Photo by Scott Baxter/Getty Images

Yet, you also feel like there’s a lot more to come. Maeda has arrived at Celtic off the back of a full campaign with Yokohama F Marinos. At times, his finishing has been ever so wayward, including a missed opportunity on Thursday night against Bodo/Glimt.

But either on from the start or off the bench, Maeda provides real attacking thrust, and the energy to track back and defend. In fact, he was arguably doing the most defending of anyone in the Arctic Circle the other night.

Hopefully, in Football Manager, his work rate is reflected. Ange has built an excellent squad, with plenty of young talents to develop. Even for neutrals, Celtic will be a fun choice on Football Manager this season and going forward.

Three words, though: we want Maeda!

Read more: Ange Postecoglou in brilliant message to Celtic players ahead of crucial run-in