“There are a lot of people who believe in me and love me and need me,” Kyogo

Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers and Player of the Year Kyogo spoke to the media at a very short media conference ahead of the second and final match of the club’s short tour in Japan against mid-table J-League side Gamba Osaka.

Kyogo did most of the talking and hints that he will have some involvement in tomorrow match which is being shown live on Celtic TV to all subscribers across the world (this time with the exception of Japan) and kicks off at 11am, Saturday morning, Celtic Park Time.

Brendan talked about how brilliant Kyogo has been for Celtic and his form and goalscoring exploits are even more impressive as we have discovered over the past 24 hours that he’s been carrying a shoulder injury since the early stages of the win over theRangers at Celtic Park last September.

“Kyogo has obviously been brilliant but he’s still working his way back to fitness,” Brendan said. “He’s had a bit of an issue with his shoulder hence the reason he only came on against Yokohama.”

“I just wanted to say we are very happy to be here and to play the second game of our Japanese tour. Our first game was a very good exercise and it’s a game that we accepted.

“I said we gained a lot from it and we expect the same from the game tomorrow playing against a very well-coached team who are technically very good and it will be another important exercise for our fitness towards the beginning of the season. We look forward to playing in the stadium, which is very nice, and look forward to the game.”

Kyogo grew up nearby and went to high school in this area of Japan so was asked if he was pleased to be playing  in Osaka and if he was delighted to be back.

“Gamba Osaka is a very great team with so many good players and they have played well in the last few games in the league,” Kyogo said. “We both have the same attacking football philosophy, so I hope it will be a great game and we can entertain the fans who are coming to watch.

“Personally, I want to have a presence in the game if I have a chance to play. I went to high school in Osaka and played against Gamba Osaka many times when I was with Vissel Kobe. So I want to enjoy this opportunity and have a good game against them.”

“Yes, exactly,” Kyogo replied.  “There are a lot of people who believe in me and love me and need me. I was very happy when I was offered the contract extension and I want to continue to repay the favour with results.

About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor David Faulds has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email editor@thecelticstar.co.uk

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