POWERHOUSE Oh Hyeon-gyu admitted he “even got a little emotional” as he celebrated his first honour as a Celtic player at Hampden last month.
The South Korean international striker replaced goal hero Kyogo Furuhashi in the 76th minute as Ange Postecoglou’s side overcame their Ibrox opposition 2-1 to win their second successive League Cup.
Oh emphasised that he would not be intimidated by the occasion at a packed and rocking national stadium when one of his first actions was to pick up a yellow card from referee Nick Walsh following a sturdy challenge on Ben Davies as he went for a high ball.
WELCOME TO THE CUP FINAL…Oh Hyeon-gyu picks up a booking from referee Nick Walsh after clattering into a bewildered Ben Davies only minutes after the South Korean striker’s introduction at Hampden.
A double salvo from Kyogo mirrored the Japanese hitman’s achievement of the previous year when he claimed two against Hibs in the competition’s showpiece showdown as the trophy returned to the east end of Glasgow.
It also propelled the Hoops in the right direction of the coveted treble although, of course, no-one at Parkhead is speaking about such a silverware feat.
In the meantime, Oh, who will be 22 next month, is settling in and doing his talking on the field, scoring three goals since his £2.5million recruitment from K-League outfit Suwon Bluewings in January.
There were the usual complications in getting the deal over the line and the burly attack-leader admitted: “It could have been easy for the manager to give up if it didn’t seem like working out, but I’m thankful he didn’t.
CUP THAT CHEERS…Oh Hyeon-gyu and Tomoki Iwata celebrate the Hampden success with No.2 John Kennedy looking on.
“I was a little bit nervous, but there was nothing I could do. As a Suwon player at that time, I had to show my best performance for them.
“I actually heard about the interest last summer. Ever since I heard this news I was dying to join Celtic.
“The process was very exhausting, but now I have the happiest moments here, getting to lift a trophy with amazing team-mates and having all these new experiences.
“As the manager wanted me so much, I want to pay him back by scoring a lot of goals. My first target when I got to the club was to get fit again as quickly as possible.
“When I came to Scotland it was in the middle of the season and in Korea the season was over. I’m very fit now compared to when I started and I hope I can show more of my better side.”
FAN-TASTIC…Oh Hyeon-gyu takes a bow with his team-mates Kyogo Furuhashi, Matt O’Riley and Alistair Johnston after the League Cup triumph.
Oh, speaking to The Celtic View, added: “It’s a great honour for me to win the League Cup even though I had only been here a month.
“It’s also been a while since I won a domestic Cup, so I was very happy to win the title and play with our outstanding players.
“There isn’t much of a difference between winning a Cup in Korea or Scotland because winning is winning, but I saw the stadium was split between both fans and through our supporters’ incredible songs, we were able to gain strength and win the game.
“That was the motivation and the reason we weren’t exhausted to the end. When we celebrated with the fans after the match, I even got a little emotional.”