Video: Neil Lennon on Kyogo ‘best since Larsson’ debate

Neil Lennon has been speaking to PLZ Soccer this week, and has been giving his own personal take on the debate that has been rumbling on lately surrounding Kyogo Furuhashi being the best Celtic striker since the sensational Henrik Larsson. The Irishman player with Larsson for several years so knows first hand how good the Swede was and the levels he reached in his career.

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Celtic’s Henrik Larsson celebrates after scoring the opening goal against RSC Anderlecht during their Champions league Group A match at Celtic Park, 05 November 2003. Photo IAN STEWART/AFP via Getty Images)

Similarly, Lenny had the chance to coach and manage both Gary Hooper and Odsonne Edouard during his tenure as Celtic boss on two separate occasions. Both those men scored loads of goals for the club – and more importantly – important ones too, which included in the UEFA Champions. This is where Lennon believes Kyogo is lagging behind some of the others and can’t be considered the best since Henrik just yet.

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On the debate, he said: “Yeah and you talk about (Gary) Hooper as well, he was a fantastic goalscorer. Edouard – look, everyone will have their own favourites. But the proof in the pudding is, can you do it at the top level? And that’s where Kyogo will be looking to make an impact. It sort of enhances your reputation and brings more admirers to the club to watch you.

“I think he’s a fantastic player. I really think he’s made such an impact since he’s come through the door and it looks like he’s getting better so I’m hoping that one, he stays fit and two, he makes an impact in the (Feyenoord) game tomorrow night because he’s so important to Celtic at the minute.”

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Kyogo Furuhashi celebrates after scoring the team’s first goal during the Cinch Scottish Premiership match between theRangers and Celtic FC at Ibrox Stadium on September 03, 2023. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

When asked outright if the Japanese star was the best since the halcyon days of the King of Kings, he replied: “No, not for me, he’s still got a bit to do. And the other thing was there’s talk of him going to the Premier League. I’m not sure he’s ready to play on a regular basis in the Premier League at the top level, but I think he’s got the potential to do that. But I think he’s still got a bit to do to be talked in the same breath as the other ones.”

Paul Gillespie

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About Author

I'm a Garngad Bhoy through and through. My first ever Celtic game was a friendly against Italian side Parma at Celtic Park, in 2002. Currently a student of English Literature and Education at the University of Strathclyde for my sins. Favourite game would be a toss up between beating Manchester United with that Naka freekick, or the game against the Oldco when Hesselink scored in the dying seconds. I'm still convinced Cal Mac is wasted playing that far back.

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