Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers has urged striker Kyogo Furuhashi to step up ahead of what is set to be a crucial run-in for the Hoops. The centre-forward has in no way hit the heights this season that he did in the last.

Throughout 2023/24 to date, the Japanese hitman has scored 13 times. For Kyogo’s high standards, such a record is underwhelming.

He did make a rather positive impact off the bench at Tynecastle on Sunday, but his gaffer has been left disappointed by his performances this season.

Indeed, Rodgers pointed towards his previous management of Leigh Griffiths as an indication as to why Kyogo must improve: “In my first spell here, Leigh Griffiths had scored 40 goals the previous season”, he said (RecordSport).

Brendan Rodgers Celtic
11th February 2024; St Mirren Park, Paisley, Renfrewshire, Scotland, Scottish Cup Football, St Mirren versus Celtic; Celtic Manager Brendan Rodgers

“People couldn’t envisage him not being in Celtic’s starting 11 but for me, it’s always about the team, never one player.

“This is a sign that Kyogo has to step up as well.”

Although Kyogo hasn’t been at his best by any means this campaign, many supporters have criticised the manager’s use of the player.

Arguably, Rodgers’ tactics don’t suit the treble-winning striker. Adam Idah, whose playstyle contrasts that of the 29-year-old’s, has made a notable impact since joining the club, adding testament to such a point.

It is up to the boss to get the best out of a player who possesses the utmost talent going into nine league matches – including two Glasgow derbies – that will decide the destination of the title and an automatic Champions League place for next season.


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