"We can beat them"; Kyogo's inspiring Celtic Champions League rallying call

By Dave Flanigan

August 27, 2022

Celtic striker Kyogo Furuhashi has issued a rallying call ahead of Celtic’s Champions League group stage opener with Real Madrid next week.

Ange Postecoglou’s side were drawn against the European champions as well as old foes RB Leipzig and Shakhtar Donetsk in Group F at Thursday’s draw in Istanbul, with Kyogo believing that his side won’t be showing any fear in a tough but competitive group.

As reported by The Daily Record, Kyogo said: “I was looking forward to playing against Real Madrid. I think we can beat them. We have to express on the pitch what we have been working on. Through the way we play we can beat any team so we just have to try and do it.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

“There are a lot of equal opportunities for all teams in the Champions League. We just believe in our football, our play and we have good supporters, good staff and good team-mates. They are all supporting us so we will work hard to get a good result.”

With the time difference between Scotland and Japan, it wasn’t until the next day that the striker received messages of support from his homeland about the draw, and the 27 year old can’t wait for the games to come around.

Kyogo said: “I didn’t expect that we be the first team from the pot. In Japan it was midnight but I got lots of messages and texts in the morning.

“All teams are very good and whatever group we got would have been okay for me but to compete against Real Madrid, Leipzig and Shakhtar is a really nice group for me, I would like to play as soon as possible.

“Last year we were champions and so I would like to see our performances now individually and collectively in the Champions League. We would like to show and express our best. We have time to grow up now. We will work hard to improve and become a better team and evolve until these games.”

Celtic haven’t played in European football’s premier competition proper since the 2017-18, with the Hoops already eliminated in the qualifiers by Midtjylland by the time the Japan international was ready to play following his move from Vissel Kobe last summer.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

With only Callum McGregor, James Forrest and Anthony Ralston playing for the club at this level previously, it’ll be an exciting time for the entire squad to test themselves against some of the elite of European and arguably world football in the coming weeks.

Kyogo and his teammates will have to wait patiently for the Champions League ties, as the team have three domestic games beforehand, starting tomorrow with a game at Tannadice against Dundee United.

In other news: The familiar face set to make Celtic Park return after Champions League draw