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Absolutely perfect- Rodgers sends out his Kyogo message

First time around Moussa Dembele was the striking face of Brendan Rodgers’ Celtic side.

Leigh Griffiths had a back up role but there was no doubting the impact of the young Frenchman who scored a hat-trick in his first Glasgow Derby followed quickly by a double in a thrilling 3-3 Champions League draw against Manchester City.

The Glasgow Derby became Dembele’s platform. He scored at Ibrox and Hampden as opponents stood off, afraid of the damage that he could inflict with his physique and ability in front of goal.

At Leicester Rodgers inherited a very different type of striker but there was no doubting that Jamie Vardy was the focus of his side.

One of the first acts of Part Two at Celtic was to get Kyogo Furuhashi signed up onto a new extended contract, a move universally welcomed by the Celtic support.

Rodgers has still to meet Kyogo in person but didn’t hesitate over fixing up last seasons top scorer until 2027.

Him and Daizen have been outstanding players for the club. With Kyogo signing, I’ve always had a striker at the top of the pitch with pace and for me he’s absolutely perfect. His work-rate, intensity and how he presses the game but then his movement is that of a top forward. I’ve spoken to him on video and stuff, you can just get a sense of his character and mentality.


You can’t underestimate his work-rate (Maeda). He’s different to other players but what he gives the team, he can play in a number of positions. He sets the tone for the pressing, on the left-side or through the middle like he does for Japan. He presses and works tirelessly and we can work with him to add more goals to his game. You will see him constantly improve.

With Maeda and Kyogo signed up onto new contracts there should be minimal disruption with the fans getting their first look at Rodgers’ side on July 19 when they take on Yokohama F Marinos.

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