Reo Hatate gives his thoughts on versatility; what he wants to bring to Celtic

By Euan Davidson

January 8, 2022

New Bhoy Reo Hatate has shared his thoughts on being a versatile option for Celtic.

Hatate was unveiled to supporters within the last hour, and spoke of his joy at being brought to Celtic Park by Ange Postecoglou.

There’s been considerable debate about where Hatate will play for Celtic. Experts, like Sam Robson, insist that he’s a ball-playing, creative midfielder. That’d be perfect foil for Callum McGregor, Tom Rogic and David Turnbull under Ange’s system.

Photo by Masashi Hara/Getty Images

Hatate, though, has been specific about what he wants to bring to Celtic Football Club. And it’s excellent news for supporters.

The new Bhoy told Celtic’s in-house media [Celtic FC]: “Being able to play in different positions has given me confidence as a footballer.

“With this team, I want to be able to bring out the best in my style of play and contribute to the attacking side of things a bit more.

“I hope to be the best version of myself so I can contribute towards Celtic and I want the fans to see how I play and to know my style as soon as possible.’

“I will do my best in training and in the games and I’m really looking forward to it.”

The latest on Japanese derby absences as Johnny Kenny gets set for Celtic move

The latest on Japanese derby absences as Johnny Kenny gets set for Celtic move
67 Hail Hail (Youtube)

Reo Hatate has exciting ambition after Celtic move

To me, this seems perfect. While Callum McGregor playing as a 6 for Celtic has been largely successful, there is sometimes a lack of mobility from Rogic or Turnbull. They’re natural number 10s, and although they’ve improved as advanced 8s, having a guy like Hatate who knows the position well is vital.

So when Hatate says he wants to contribute in an attacking sense, that’s exciting.

With the movement of guys like Jota, Kyogo and fellow new Bhoy Daizen Maeda in front of him, he won’t be short of options for killer passes and through balls. The potential really is something that fans will be looking forward to.

Photo by Hiroki Watanabe/Getty Images

Of course, he’s able to fill different positions should the need arise. But it makes the most tactical sense to think that he’s a bridge between McGregor and the attacking portion of the midfield. Creating some balance is crucial, particularly in European matches, where we’ve often been caught out centrally.

The key thing, though; Hatate sounds raring to go. After two consecutive J League titles, why wouldn’t he be?

It’s smart business form Celtic. Ange Postecoglou is building a team in his image, and it’s just cruel that we have 9 days to wait before we see the Bhoys in Green take to the pitch again.

Read more: Ange has played deal for Celtic youngster Liam Shaw perfectly; history backs it up