KYOGO’S SWEET SIXTEEN

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KYOGO FURUHASHI hardly rated a mention when he made his first appearance in a Celtic shirt following his £4.6million summer switch from Vissel Kobe.

The Japanese striker was an unknown quantity when Ange Postecoglou plundered the J-League for its top marksman.

Alas, nothing had changed following Kyogo’s 11-minute substitute cameo when he replaced Liel Abada as the Hoops were drawing 1-1 with Hearts at Tynecastle on the opening evening of the Premiership campaign on July 31. Kyogo had just arrived in the UK the previous day, but was pushed on as his new manager looked for a winner.

PRIZE GUY…Kyogo Furuhashi with the newly-won Premier Sports League Cup following his double salvo against Hibs on December 19.

Unfortunately, the ambition of Postecoglou to press for a points-clincher rebounded on the visitors when John Souttar rose unchallenged to Michael Smith’s left-wing free-kick delivery to bullet a second goal past Scott Bain in the fading moments.

It wasn’t the most noteworthy of starts for the 26-year-old forward who was eager to bring Eastern Promise to Parkhead during the massive revamp as Celtic edged into a new era after the wretched term when the quest for the historic 10 in a row had inexplicably imploded in the club’s first trophyless season in 11 years.

Six months later, we ALL know the name of Kyogo Furuhashi, who celebrates his 27th birthday today.

KYOGO IN PARADISE…the Japanese striker takes the plaudits of the delighted Celtic support.

The lively raider netted the sixteenth goal of his fledgling Hoops career when he sublimely lobbed the ball over stranded Hibs keeper Matt Macey for Postecoglou’s first piece of silverware at Parkhead.

As his lofted effort drifted towards the vacant net following his exquisite first touch from quick-thinking Tom Rogic’s excellent free-kick, the Premier Sports League Cup was heading for the east end of Glasgow for the fifth time in six years.

The Japanese international recently revealed his target for the season was to hit twenty goals.

Barring a disaster, CQN reckons Kyogo might just surpass his striking ambition.

Enjoy the sweet sixteen of the best from the Celtic fans’ favourite.

It’s Kyogo’s birthday treat for his new army of admirers.

GOAL NUMBER ONE…Kyogo races away after slotting an effort into the FK Jablonec net on August 5.

GOAL NUMBER TWO…Kyogo gets on the end of a Liel Abada cross to fire in the first of a hat-trick against Dundee on August 8.

GOAL NUMBER THREE…sit-down striker as Kyogo turns in a close-range effort against the Dens Park outfit.

GOAL NUMBER FOUR…Kyogo completes a terrific trio with a brilliant first-time effort as the Hoops romp to a 6-0 success. 

GOAL NUMBER FIVE…Kyogo is on the ground, but his flashing drive is on its way into the net past Hearts keeper Craig Gordon for the winner in the 3-2 Premier Sports League Cup quarter-final encounter at Parkhead on August 15.

GOAL NUMBER SIX…Kyogo stretches to knock a Tom Rogic left-wing cross into the AZ Alkmaar net to open the scoring in the 2-0 win on August 18.

GOAL NUMBER SEVEN…Kyogo is left unmarked as he thumps in what turned out to be the Europa League qualifying winner against the Dutch side on August 26.

GOAL NUMBER EIGHT…Kyogo chests in the opener in the team’s 2-1 victory over Aberdeen at Pittodrie on October 3. David Bates gets a close-up view.

GOAL NUMBER NINE…Kyogo smashes in a low shot for the opening goal in the 2-0 Europa League Group G section triumph over Ferencvaros in Glasgow on October 19.

GOAL NUMBER TEN…Kyogo gets on the end of a Filipe Jota low cross to tuck Celtic’s third goal behind Hibs keeper Matt Macey in the 3-1 Premiership success on October 27.

GOAL NUMBER ELEVEN…Kyogo prepares to fire a left-foot drive into the Ferencvaros net to trigger a 3-2 victory in Budapest on November 4.

GOAL NUMBER TWELVE…Kyogo takes to the air to score his first header as he flashes in No.1 in the 4-2 win over Dundee at Dens Park on November 7.

GOAL NUMBER THIRTEEN…Kyogo doesn’t hesitate as he wallops in another against the Tayside outfit.

GOAL NUMBER FOURTEEN…Kyogo gets in ahead of Hearts defender Craig Halkett to first-time a cross from Anthony Ralston past keeper Craig Gordon for the matchwinner on December 2.

GOAL NUMBER FIFTEEN…Kyogo slots in the equaliser with a neat sidefoot effort past Hibs keeper Matt Macey in the Premier Sports League Cup Final on December 19.

GOAL NUMBER SIXTEEN…that Cup-winning touch as Kyogo lifts the ball towards the Hibs net with Hibs defender Ryan Porteous helpless to prevent the pacy frontman netting the strike that brought Celtic their 20th League Cup.

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