Celtic signing of Kyogo Furuhashi could net his high school $95k

By Euan Davidson

July 17, 2021

New Celtic forward Kyogo Furuhashi could end up netting around $95,000 (US) for his high school.

Japanese football customs dictate that his former school football team, Kokoru High School in Osaka, could net a huge profit from developing Furuhashi. Interestingly, he wasn’t the only future international at Kokoru HS; Liverpool man Takumi Minamino was a teammate [Daily Record].

Per Dan Orlowitz, who spoke to 67 Hail Hail about the development path for Japanese players, the system is very different to Europe. High School clubs are treated as Academy clubs in Japan.

Meanwhile, University sides are treated as amateur clubs. You’ll often see University teams compete in the Emperor’s Cup [Lost in Football Japan]. Furuhashi’s team, Chuo University, are also in line to make a tidy profit from his sale to Celtic.

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Given the work that coaches do at the early stages of a player’s career, there’s something oddly heart-warming about this. The idea that a school profits in a meaningful way from a big football transfer? It’s a progressive model which rewards high standards of coaching and education.

In Europe, big clubs with far-reaching academies tend to earn most of, if not all of, a player’s eventual fee. Our recent business tells us that. Celtic’s signing of Osaze Urhoghide will net Sheffield Wednesday a compensatory fee of around £200,000 [Scotsman], for example.

Or, take Jeremie Frimpong. When he was sold to Bayer Leverkusen, Manchester City netted profit from a sell-on fee [TalkSport]. All fine and well, but it’s a system that inherently benefits big clubs with outstanding facilities.

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This, to my mind, is a far more holistic and fair way of doing things. It’s possible that high schools associated with certain clubs, for example St Ninian’s [UEFA], receive some kind of compensation for helping to mould stars of the future. Or, in Celtic’s case, the other St Ninian’s in Kirkintilloch, which educates many Bhoys Academy talents [Celtic FC].

Photo by Buddhika Weerasinghe/Getty Images

It also goes some way to explaining the positivity in Japan surrounding the move. For sure, it makes the J-League a little weaker, not having its top scorer. Still, there’s an enormous sense of good will from Vissel Kobe and J-League fans more widely [The Boot Room].

When a player moves abroad for big money, it’s not just the selling club who makes a profit. The infrastructure that exists to build a career in football is rewarded.

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