BRENDAN RODGERS is convinced Kyogo Furuhashi has responded to the challenge from Adam Idah to lead the Celtic attack.

The Hoops boss insists the Japanese striker has upped his game since the six-goal Norwich City loanee arrived at the champions in January.

Rodgers is adamant it’s “no coincidence” Kyogo is sparking again after his striking rate had dipped alarmingly from the previous season’s treble-winning campaign.

At this stage last year, the pacy 29-year-old hitman had claimed 28 goals before going on to complete his total with his 34th strike as he netted the opener in the 3-1 Scottish Cup Final triumph over Inverness Caley Thistle at a sun-kissed Hampden on June 3.

HOOP HOOP HOORAY…Kyogo Furuhashi celebrates a strike against Livingston last month. 

Kyogo collected his 15th counter this time around in the 3-1 win over St Johnstone at Parkhead last month.

He was replaced by Idah in the 69th minute at Ibrox last weekend and the Republic of Ireland international whipped in the visitors’ third goal in the 3-3 stalemate.

Rodgers is coy on talk of the £3million-rated frontman remaining at the club when his temporary terms expires, but said: “The player is enjoying his time here and, come the end of the season, we’ll sit down and see where we are at and take it from there.

“I am delighted for Adam. I communicate regularly with him and the whole idea was to get to the end of the season and bring him here and I feel that his impact can not only help the team, but also the other strikers here.

“I think it’s no coincidence that Kyogo’s game has gone to another level again with that competition, bringing Adam in.”

IRISH AYES…Adam Idah celebrates his goal in the 7-1 romp against Dundee in February.

The Irishman, speaking to Celtic TV, added: “You have two different types of strikers there, one with penetration and movement who is sublime, who can score a goal.

“Then you have another guy who can run in behind, but is more the target player who can take the ball in and also score goals.

“It’s brilliant to have Adam here with the other strikers and, for me, he has made a great impact. He has all the tools and certainly has a lot of potential.

“I know he is really enjoying it here at Celtic and enjoying the pressure of being here and has responded really well.”

*DON’T miss the unbeatable match report from Celtic v St Mirren this afternoon – only in your champion CQN.

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