Yuki Kobayashi speaks after signing 5-year deal for Celtic

By Lewis Laird

November 23, 2022

Celtic have confirmed the signing of Vissel Kobe and Japanese central defender Yuki Kobayashi on a five-year deal.

The 22-year-old becomes Ange Postecoglou’s first new addition in the January window as the Hoops transfer plans get underway.

The Bhoys have been linked with a move for the talented defender in recent weeks, with reports from Japan confirming the club’s interest.

With the transfer window opening in just over a month’s time, Celtic are looking to conduct their business early in January.

Celtic boss Ange Postecoglou has been hinting that the Hoops have moves lined up, with many supporters expecting Kobayashi to be one of the first moves conducted.

And the Parkhead faithful were handed an early surprise during the winter World Cup break, as the club confirmed that the Japanese defender would join the club on the 1st of January 2023 after signing a five-year deal at Parkhead.

Speaking for the first time since his move to Paradise, the defender stated how much of an honour it was going to be to pull on the green and white Hoops.

The former teammate of Kyogo Furuhashi at Vissel also opened up on the influence Ange Postecoglou had on the move after his time spent in Japan.

He said [Celtic FC]: “I am so excited to be joining Celtic, and I am really looking forward to this wonderful opportunity.  

Photo by Masashi Hara/Getty Images

“I will be giving everything to try and be successful with the Club.

“Right across the world, everyone knows what a special club Celtic is, and it will be a real honour to wear this fantastic jersey.

“The work of Ange Postecoglou is also really well-known in Japan after he had such a great time in the J League, and as well as being part of Celtic, I can’t wait to work with him as a coach and the great team of players he has already developed.

“I know that Celtic, over so many years, has such a brilliant track record of success, and I now want to play my part in bringing more great moments to the Club and our fans.

“I would like to thank Vissel Kobe sincerely for all the support that has been given to me in the early part of my career, and now I look forward to embracing this exciting new challenge with Celtic, one of the world’s great football clubs.”

Excitement already beginning to build for Celtic return after World Cup as January business gets underway.

Photo by Etsuo Hara/Getty Images

It came as a pleasant surprise to Celtic supporters this afternoon to see the Hoops’ January transfer business already get underway, and we haven’t even gotten into December yet!

On paper, Kobayashi looks to be another fantastic pick-up by Ange Postecoglou, who has used his knowledge of the J-League to his advantage in the last 18 months.

If he can be even just half the success of the likes of Reo Hatate and Kyogo Furuhashi, we are bound to have picked up another exciting player from the Japanese market.

Early signings such as Kobayashi are only going to build excitement ahead of the Bhoys’ return after the World Cup, as Ange Postecoglou targets further improvements on the domestic front.

The defender isn’t likely to be the only piece of business conducted by the club in the winter either, with the Celtic boss looking to take his side to the next level.

In other news, The verdict on Josip Juranovic after Celtic defender makes first World Cup start.