MASTER marksman Kyogo Furuhashi is determined to make sure Celtic are smiles better in the new season.

The Japanese international striker, who has fired in 54 goals in his 83 appearances spread over two seasons at Parkhead, delighted the Hoops fans when he signed a new four-year deal a week ago, as CQN reported.

Kyogo became an instant hit with the champions’ followers when he made his bow in Paradise on August 8 2021 – just over a week after sealing his £4.6million switch from Vissel Kobe – and walloped in a hat-trick in a 6-0 romp against doomed Dundee.

HAIL THE HERO…Kyogo Furuhashi acknowledges the cheers from the Celtic support.

Returning gaffer Brendan Rodgers has already expressed his joy at the fleet-footed forward’s agreement to an extended deal, a decision that was repeated by the player’s international colleague Daizen Maeda a couple of days later when he did likewise.

Kyogo acknowledges the support he receives from the fans and he is eager to make sure they continue grinning with the Hoops winning as they defend all three domestic honours and attempt to make an impact in Europe.

The prolific hitman said: “From children to elderly people, a lot of people are cheering and supporting us.

“Once I step outside of the house and go into the city, many people talk to me, and at the stadium, all the supporters are cheering us from the bottom of their hearts.

“And because they are there, we can compete because I want to see their smiles. I work hard to get the win and they are very important to me.”

On signing his new contract, Kyogo, speaking to Celtic TV, continued: “I’m really delighted, to be honest. I’m happy that it shows how much they value me and want me.

“For the team and for the people who support us, and also for myself, I will continue to improve and to deliver success.”

CELTIC’S JAPANESE BHOYS…Tomoki Iwata, Reo Hatate, Daizen Maeda, Kyogo Furuhashi and Yuki Kobayashi bring down the curtain on a treble-winning campaign with the Scottish Cup triumph last month.

Kyogo and his compatriots Maeda, Reo Hatate, Tomoki Iwata and Yuki Kobayashi are now heading home with the champions playing two pre-season games in Japan – against Yokohama F Marinos a week tomorrow and Gamba Osaka three days later.

The crowdpleaser added: “I’m really excited about it and excited to play in front of Japanese fans. I want them to know about us and become our fans.

“Also, many people from Scotland are coming down and I want them to enjoy Japanese culture, too.

“They will be two tough games , but if we can deliver what we are working and believing in, then they will be good games and the good results will follow. We will play with high confidence in ourselves.”

Speaking of the qualities of second time-around boss Rodgers, Kyogo concluded: “He’s a brilliant manager. I’m happy to work with him and I would like to return the favour by playing well to get success.

“We need to work hard together to get as many wins as possible.

“There will be Champions League, as well, so we need to prepare well in order to have good results this season.”

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