Since the arrival of Ange Postecoglou as manager, Celtic have signed four Japanese players, and overall, they have proven to be a grand success. Kyogo Furuhashi has been an incredible hit at Parkhead, and played a key role in both their Premiership and League Cup triumph last season. Daizen Maeda has done quite well too and is expected to get even better moving forward. Reo Hatate’s form faded away towards the end but he made a major contribution early on as well.
One player who has not been able to get it going since his arrival at Parkhead, in January, is Yosuke Ideguchi. The midfielder was signed from Gamba Osaka and till now, he has spent the majority of his time sitting on the bench.
Ideguchi was arguably the most interesting signing of the previous campaign. While Kyogo, Maeda and Hatate were all coming off of exceptional seasons in Japan, that was not the case for the Gamba Osaka midfielder. Thus, he was signed based on more of what he could do at his best than what he had been doing recently.
“This will be my second attempt [in Europe] at Celtic. I am absolutely determined to get a result. Here at Celtic, it is easy to blend in as a club, and above all, there is a lot of respect for Japanese players because [Kyogo] Furuhashi has achieved results before me.
“Reo [Hatate] is also in the same position. Having a Japanese player in the team makes it easier, but it is also a limited position. I think it’s great that Reo got results first, but of course it’s frustrating [not to play]. In order to secure a permanent position here, I have to show my play and features more fully. Celtic’s football is very aggressive, so if I were to show my strengths, it would be in switching between offense and defense. I hope I can make the switch from defense to attack and from attack to defense. There are many offensive players in midfield, so I hope to bring out my strengths which are different from those.”
Ideguchi makes brutally honest Celtic admission
This is Ideguchi’s second stint in Europe. He had been signed by Leeds United back in 2018 but it did not work out for him. He spent a couple of unsuccessful loan spells in Germany and Spain, respectively, before moving back to Japan.
The move stalled Ideguchi’s development to a large extent because early on in his career, he had looked like the next big thing in Japanese football.
He is still just 25 years of age though and has impressed in some of his recent cameos off the bench for Celtic. Thus, there is hope that he can prove himself in the upcoming season.
This article was originally posted here