Celtic have 'serious player' in Hatate after what I've seen - McAvennie

By Frank McAvennie

19th Jan, 2022 | 10:14am

Hatate had one of the best Celtic debuts I've ever seen - McAvennie

Frank McAvennie was blown away after witnessing Reo Hatate’s Celtic debut in person.

The former Hoops hitman, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, hailed the midfielder’s performance as “immense”.

Hatate, 24, was in from the start as Celtic beat Hibernian 2-0 at Parkhead on Monday night (17 January).

The midfielder joined the Hoops from Kawasaki Frontale as soon as the January window opened along with Daizen Maeda and Yosuke Ideguchi.

McAvennie, who was at Celtic Park on Monday, claims Hatate’s debut was one of the best he’s ever seen.

“Hatate, the boy in midfield, was immense,” McAvennie told Football Insider correspondent Ben Wild.

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“For a debut, that must be up there as one of the best I have ever seen.

“His tackling was incredible and you could tell he knew where the ball was going to be before it was there.

“His reading of the game was magnificent. He was that good. I’m hoping it’s not just a one-off.

“He never stopped chasing and, for me, he walks into that midfield now.

“It was a pleasure to watch him play and he got a standing ovation when he came off. It was absolutely deserved.

“I saw that video of Jamesy Forrest telling Hatate he won man of the match and he seemed surprised.

“Maybe he thought he wasn’t that good, I hope that’s the case because if that was an average performance then we have a serious player here.”

Celtic moved within three points of Rangers with their win.

This gap was only extended to four points after the Gers drew with Aberdeen on Tuesday (16 January).

In other news, Tottenham and Wolves in race to sign Celtic rising star Mitchel Frame.