By Alan Hutton

18th Dec, 2021 | 10:00am

Scottish pundit issues 'huge' Celtic transfer claim after Kyogo reveal

Alan Hutton has claimed Kyogo Furuhashi could play a “huge” role in luring more players from Japan to Celtic.

The former Rangers defender, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, insisted the 26-year-old’s presence would help convince others to join the Bhoys.

As reported by Sky Sports on Monday (13 December), Celtic are close to agreeing a deal to sign Reo Hatate, with Ange Postecoglou targeting several additions from the J-League.

Speaking to Celtic TV on Sunday (12 December), summer signing Furuhashi revealed he has settled quickly in Scotland.

He insisted Glasgow is “easy to live in” and admitted he already calls it his “second home”.

Hutton suggested the 26-year-old’s testimony, plus his presence in the Parkhead dressing room, would help convince any other players considering a move.

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“It’ll be hugely important,” Hutton told Football Insider’s Russell Edge.

“Obviously Postecoglou is looking at a different market, Kyogo has worked out tremendously well. He’s really going from strength to strength.

“So for players that obviously Kyogo will know, the manager will know, it will help them settle down into a new city, a part of the world.

“That’s difficult enough if you are coming from the likes of Spain or Germany. From halfway around the world it is going to be even tougher, to be that far away from your family.

“So to have someone there who’s done it, who’s really a star in that team, to help you to get into the team and break into the squad, there’s nothing better.

“It doesn’t surprise me that he’s looking to that market. Obviously, Kyogo’s done so well. You have to just be careful that you don’t go there too much and try and change things too much.

“It can become difficult trying to keep all your squad happy.”

Kyogo has played 24 times and scored 14 goals for Celtic to date.

He is currently out of action due to a hamstring injury.

In other news, expert predicts Celtic fan backlash after Police Scotland statement.