Kyogo Furuhashi reveals he’s nearing Celtic return as countryman Daizen Maeda withdraws from Japan squad due to ‘fitness reasons’
Furuhashi hasn’t featured for the Hoops since Boxing Day after sustaining a hamstring injury against St Johnstone
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Celtic striker Kyogo Furuhashi has revealed he is nearing a return to competitive action after stepping up his rehab from a hamstring injury.
The Japanese sensation has been sidelined since limping off against St Johnstone on Boxing Day but recently returned to light training at the club’s Lennoxtown base.
Hoops manager Ange Postecoglou hinted last week his talisman could be back in contention over the coming weeks to boost their Premiership title bid.
Updating fans on his recovery, Furuhashi said: “I have been sidelined since my injury in December last year, but I am in very good condition and I feel that I will be back soon.
“I’m glad to hear a lot of messages from the supporters. I am spending my time hoping to get back on the as soon as possible.”
Postecoglou will hope Kyogo could be passed fit to face rivals Rangers in the Scottish Cup semi-final on April 17.
Asked about the 27-year-old former Vissel Kobe frontman being spotted on the training ground, Postecoglou grinned: “He’s been injured mate, he wasn’t kidnapped!
“He’s been here every day, he’s fine. He’s working towards it. I don’t want to put timelines on it, but you look at David Turnbull and he was injured three or four weeks before and they are running similar sort of rehabs.
“He’s working hard and doing well. Hopefully he’ll be back soon. The international break gives him a chance to do some work as well.”
Meanwhile, Kyogo’s international team-mate Daizen Maeda has withdrawn from the Japan squad for their World Cup double-header with Australia and Vietnam due to ‘fitness reasons.’
The 24-year-old, who played the full 90 minutes and scored Celtic’s third goal during a 4-0 thrashing of Ross County on Saturday, had been selected alongside Reo Hatate in Hajime Moriyasu’s 26-man squad.
However, Dan Orlowitz, journalist for Japan Times, confirmed the FA had confirmed Maeda will play no part in their upcoming games, with the decision not believed to be injury-related.
He tweeted: “The JFA announces that Daizen Maeda has withdrawn from the Japan squad for fitness/condition reasons. No replacement planned.”