Kyogo Furuhashi comments on Celtic move in farewell speech

By David Walton

July 18, 2021

Departing Vissel Kobe striker Kyogo Furuhashi has commented on his Celtic move for the first time in his farewell speech.

Furuhashi played his final match for the J-League club yesterday in a 1-1 stalemate against Cerezo Osaka. Unsurprisingly, he would net in it too as his opener marked his 16th in 22 games this season [Transfermarkt].

The Japan international won’t be able to feature on Tuesday night against FC Midtjylland. It remains to be seen when he’ll make his debut.

But yesterday was all about his goodbye to his soon-to-be former club. And as he commented on his Parkhead move, he promised to be back one day.

As quoted by the Daily Record, Furuhashi said: “I’m just grateful to everyone here and I can’t stop crying.

“I will do my best when I go to Celtic. I will continue to do all I can to give you dreams and courage and to be respected as a person. Everyone seems to love me here. I am not really saying goodbye totally because we will meet again.

“To my teammates and managers – from the time I came to the club to today, I respected everyone and learned a lot. Thanks to everyone, I was able to ignite my passion for football and do my best every game. I will continue to support everyone.

“And dear fans, I have received a lot of support since I came to the club, and I have only words of gratitude. Thank you very much. The passion and unwavering support of the supporters have always been a great help.”

Kyogo Furuhashi will have plenty of expectation on his shoulders

You can’t deny the level of pressure that’s going to be on Furuhashi’s shoulders as he prepares to jet off to Scotland.

Firstly, you have his goal record. Bagging 16 in 22 appearances this season is incredible, as is three in his first six for Japan. His overall goal return with Vissel Kobe stands at 49 goals in 111 matches [Transfermarkt].

Then you have the fact that constant comparisons will be made to Celtic’s most iconic ever Japanese signing Shunsuke Nakamura. Despite the fact they’re totally different players who play in different areas of the football pitch, Celtic fans will hope for a similar impact.

Then there’s the simple fact that Celtic simply need as many goalscorers as we can get. Goodness knows what’s happening with Leigh Griffiths at this point. Patryk Klimala is well gone, whilst Odsonne Edouard’s future remains up in the air. Furuhashi will be expected to make a massive contribution.

Photo by Mohamed Farag/Getty Images

So he shouldn’t expect much of a bedding in period. We’ll need the clearly talented Japanese forward to hit the ground running. It’s going to be a totally different footballing environment and culture for him to get used to. But this isn’t a season where Celtic can wait a couple of months for their best players to get going.

We need to make our mark on the campaign from matchday one at Tynecastle.

Hopefully, Furuhashi will be ready to come straight into the side as soon as he touches down.

In other news: LIEL Abada tells Celtic supporters he’s ready to go vs Midtjylland