Callum McGregor, The Celtic Star’s Player of the Year

Callum McGregor has been voted as The Celtic Star’s Player of the Year by our writers. The Celtic captain has beaten competition from his excellent teammates to win the award for the third successive season. The Scotland Internationalist has beaten Kyogo, Reo Hatate and Cameron Carter-Vickers following an impressive campaign leading by example in the middle of the Celtic midfield.

Editor – Kyogo

It has to be Kyogo, when you have a top goalscorer everything else is easier. Hatate and Mooy have had great spells, the captain has been magnificent as always and Cameron Carter-Vickers is brilliant at the back but can’t see past Kyogo.

Niall J – Kyogo

The player of the year has been as tough one to call this season, as with many others over the course of our incredible eleven titles in the last twelve years.

Greg Taylor has been wonderfully consistent this season and his development under Ange this season continued the upward trajectory he’s been on since the big man arrived.

Cameron Carter-Vickers of Celtic shakes hands with Joe Hart after the team’s victory in the Scottish Cup Semi Final match between Rangers and Celtic at Hampden Park on April 30, 2023 . (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Cameron Carter-Vickers has made it look so easy as he’s strolled through much of the domestic challengers and when really pushed on occasion has proven he can slip through the gears when required. That offers much promise that the best is yet to come from CCV, despite this season already evidencing such high standards.

Callum McGregor has been a superb leader this season and is the driving force for standards on and off the pitch. Captain duties aside he’s also rarely dropped below and 8 out of ten every week and that goal late on at Aberdeen offered a moment which on reflection was huge for Celtic’s season. Meanwhile just ahead of him Reo Hatate has incredible vision, a willingness to take on the difficult pass and seems to add layers to his game with each passing month.

However, player of the season has to be Kyogo. His movement off the ball is elite-level stuff and if there was ever a player for the crunch games then five goals against our nearest challengers proved Kyogo can rise to the big occasion. For a player short in stature, survival in the Scottish top flight may seem a tall task but Kyogo has a wee bit of devilment I like, can handle himself just fine and disarms the opposition brilliantly with those wee pats on the head to boot. He was left out the Japan squad for the World Cup and I felt it might impact him. It did, but not as negatively as I thought it might. Post World Cup and into the business end of the season Kyogo rose to the occasion and delivered for Celtic almost every time he was needed. A superb season and a deserved player of the year.

EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND – MAY 07: Kyogo Furuhashi of Celtic celebrates after scoring the team’s first goal during the Cinch Scottish Premiership match between Heart of Midlothian and Celtic FC at Tynecastle Park on May 07, 2023 in Edinburgh, Scotland. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Lubo98 – Callum McGregor

There are a couple of moments that stand out this season that showcase McGregor’s importance to the team. The 30-year-old keeps everything ticking over in the Celtic midfield through his constant energy, passing, pressing and breaking up play.

The first moment was the red card that McGregor received at home to Motherwell in a narrow 2-1 win in October. After a loose backpass from Hatate, McGregor hauled Ryan Tierney down rather than allow him the opportunity to equalise in the 89th minute. It showed a cynical side of the skipper but also his desire to win. The second came at Pittodrie in December with Aberdeen setting up to simply defy Celtic. McGregor broke the deadlock with an excellent late strike and ensured the return after the World Cup would result in an away at a notoriously tough ground.

Notwithstanding the excellent seasons enjoyed by Kyogo, Carter-Vickers and Hatate, McGregor’s ability to dig in and continue to play in the manager’s style even when things may not be going smoothly proves why he is so integral to the team. For that reason, he is my Player of the Year.

GLASGOW, SCOTLAND – FEBRUARY 26: Callum McGregor of Celtic celebrates at the final whistle as Celtic beat Rangers 2-1 in the Viaplay League Cup Final at Hampden Park on February 26, 2023 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

Paul Gillespie – Reo Hatate

My player of the year would have to be Reo Hatate. A few really strong candidates – all with merit – but for me, the midfielder has put on a masterclass on several occasions this year, which included one from right-back! We badly missed his creativity during the weeks that he was injured and it showed specifically in the Motherwell draw a couple of weeks back. He will only get better and with Champions League exposure, could potentially become world-class one day.

Reo Hatate of Celtic celebrates after scoring his team’s second goal during the Cinch Scottish Premiership match between Celtic FC and Aberdeen FC at on February 18, 2023 (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Mike Maher – Callum McGregor

For Player of the Year it is Calmac for me. CCV has been immense but Callum is consistently good. So much so that its easy to overlook how well he does. And he rarely misses a game. Admittedly he was not at his best last weekend but he wasn’t the only one.

David Potter – Callum McGregor

Celtic v Livingston – Callum McGregor is presented with a framed shirt by manager Ange Postecoglou after making 400 appearances for Celtic before the cinch Premiership match at Celtic Park, Wednesday February 1, 2023. Photo Andrew Milligan

Liam Kelly – Cameron Carter-Vickers

CCV: The most important and influential player in the team. Our only two domestic defeats have come without him in the side and we missed him massively in the Champions League games when he was injured. He never makes any mistakes, strolls every game and is a good passer of the ball too. He’s absolutely outstanding and the one player we can’t cope without, against decent opposition. He has been incredible this season.

Eddie Murray – McGregor/Carter-Vickers

Calmac/Carter-Vickers shared. Both been phenomenal in our pursuit of greatness and another Treble.

There we have it, McGregor pips Kyogo to the Player of the Year title. Congratulations to Callum, who will be looking to celebrate back-to-back titles with a fine display against St Mirren.

About Author

Born just as Celtic were stopping the Ten, Lubo98 follows Celtic home and away and helps run his local Celtic Supporters Club. He goes to all the games and is a Law Graduate. Has a particular fondness for Tom Rogic among the current Celts and both Lubo and Henrik form his earliest Celtic memories.

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