BRENDAN RODGERS admits he is in the dark over Reo Hatate’s contract situation.
The Japanese midfielder has yet to sign an enhanced extension on his current deal which expires in June 2026.
Hatate’s countrymen Kyogo Furuhashi and Daizen Maeda – as well as skipper Callum McGrgeor, Anthony Ralston and Stephen Welsh – have altready signed new terms to pledge their immediate future to the champions.
There were positive noises that the dynamic 25-year-old playmaker was about to follow his team-mates’ example, as CQN reported yesterday.
REO BRAVO…Matt O’Riley congratulates team-mate Reo Hatate after his penalty-kick goal against Livingston.
However, the Hoops boss, who is preparing his squad for tomorrow’s 12.30pm kick-off against Motherwell at Fir Park, revealed he is still awaiting an update on the former Kawasaki Frontale star who arrived at Parkhead in January 2022.
Quizzed on reports Hatate is poised to sign the new deal, Rodgers answered: “I haven’t been made aware of that.
“I’ll speak to Michael Nicholson, but, in fairness to the club, they have been reaching out to the agent for quite some time. But where it’s at, I don’t know at this point.”
Hatate has returned to the starting line-up for the recent games against Feyenoord in Rotterdam and Livingston in West Lothian after battling a muscular problem and will almost certainly take his place alongside McGregor and Matt O’Riley against Stuart Kettelewell’s club.
BACK IN THE RUNNING…Nat Phillips could be in the squad for Motherwell.
Liverpool loanee Nat Phillips, who played the first-half of the 3-0 victory over Dundee almost a fortnight ago.
Rodgers, speaking to the media conference, added: “Nat Phillips, we are keeping an eye on. He has rejoined the group, but we just have to make sure with his ankle.
“That looks much better, though and, hopefully, he’ll be back for the weekend. No-one else who has been out injured will be back.”