Celtic linked with January move for Japanese defender Yuki Kobayashi

By John McGinley

October 30, 2022

Vissel Kobe defender Yuki Kobayashi is in the line for a big January move to Celtic, Japanese outlet Sponichi Annex has reported this weekend.

Sponichi, who also reported news on Yosuke Ideguchi’s eventual move to the Bhoys last year, say that an agreement has already been reached between Celtic and Vissel.

Kobayashi is said to be keen to test himself abroad and is now set to sign a contract with the Bhoys after he undergoes a future medical.

Photo by Masashi Hara/Getty Images

The 22-year-old central defender would become Celtic’s fifth Japanese signing since Ange Postecoglou arrived at the club from Yokohama F.Marinos in 2021.

He’s made 77 appearances for the J-League side and has featured for his national side at a variety of youth levels.

If the report proves to be accurate it would add intrigue to the future direction of the central defensive positions at Celtic with Cameron Carter-Vickers, Carl Starfelt, Moritz Jenz and Stephen Welsh all currently available to the manager.

Jenz’s spell is on a loan basis, which expires at the end of the season, but Celtic hold an option on his transfer.

Transfers of this nature are not without precedent at the Bhoys. Last year, the club had deals for Ideguchi, Reo Hatate and Daizen Maeda wrapped up well in advance of the January window opening.

Kyogo Furuhashi’s arrival from Vissel was also announced out of the blue and we know Postecoglou likes to be as prepared as possible.

This is definitely a situation to closely watch over the next couple of months as the manager embarks on another round of strengthening his squad.

In other news, Real Madrid drop rare points ahead of Celtic test as iconic midfielder lands first career red card.