The January window and Celtic haven’t always gone hand-in-hand but ever since the arrival of Ange Postecoglou to the club last season, the window has become an important part of the Hoops planning.
Postecoglou once again got to work fast during this window as the league leaders have added further depth to their squad after the additions of Alistair Johnston, Yuki Kobayashi and Tomoki Iwata.
Although it looks likely that key players such as Josip Juranovic and Giorgos Giakoumakis are set to leave Parkhead, one replacement has already been brought in and other identified.
It’s imperative that Celtic always come out a transfer window in a strong position which has been the case under Postecoglou in recent times. Last January they added Reo Hatate, Daizen Maeda, Matt O’Riley and Yosuke Ideguchi to their arsenal as the latter was the only one not to really make any sort of impression.
Looking at the last decade, here are some of the Hoops top five January deals.
Tom Rogic (2013) – Going way back to the very start, although Rogic didn’t make an instant impact when he arrived from Central Coast Mariners the years in which Celtic supporters got to enjoy Rogic shine and unpick defences was a joy to watch.
Stuart Armstrong (2015) – The Scotland international made an impact when he was signed under Ronny Deila from Dundee United and played a real key part in Brendan Rodgers Invincible side. When he eventually left Parkhead for Southampton, he made the Hoops a tidy £7 million.
Reo Hatate (2022) – It can be very easy to live in the present which distorts your view on the past but winning the league in Ange’s first season at the club was absolutely huge. Hatate was also the player who came in last January and scored an absolute rocket at Tynecastle before netting twice in his first derby match which swung the title race in Celtic’s favour.
Daizen Maeda (2021) – He gave the manager real flexibility when he arrived from Yokohama F Marinos and scored the first goal after the winter break on his debut for the club. Since returning from the World Cup this season he is proving to be a vital player once again and scored the Hoops first of 2023 in the 2-2 draw at Ibrox.
Matt O’Riley (2021) – The youngster who signed from MK Dons was thrown in at the deep end for his debut away to Tynecastle had an outstanding game and also performed well in the 3-0 derby game. Celtic’s midfield was beginning to lack options and he added a bit more depth. When Callum McGregor sustained an injury this season he was also the man who filled the gap.
There has been a number of other players who could be considered to be important January signings but picking three from last January is pretty self explanatory.
It was vital that Celtic won the league last season to guarantee Champions League riches and prestige to avoid the gruelling qualifies to get into the tournament. It also meant that instantly the tide turned in the Hoops direction which many will hope continues for years to come as the squad was badly needing new additions last year.