Former Celtic player Frank McAvennie says he wouldn’t be surprised if Kyogo Furuhashi made a ‘shock appearance’ in Sunday’s Scottish League Cup final.
Furuhashi has missed Celtic’s last two games through an injury he sustained in his side’s final Europa League group stage game against Real Betis.
Ange Postecogolou brought on the Japan international when Albian Ajeti was forced off with a hamstring injury, only for Furuhashi to suffer the same problem.
Celtic already knew they would be finishing third in the group and entering the Europa Conference League playoff round, so the game was something of a dead-rubber.
And now Furuhashi faces a late fitness test at Lennoxtown ahead of the Hampden Park clash with Hibernian.
He thinks there’s a possibility that the 26-year-old will play a part in Sunday’s showpiece.
“There have been a few times where Ange has said players won’t make it or they will only make the bench,” he said.
“Then they are in from the start in the next game. So well will see what happens.
“I’m not getting my hopes up but it wouldn’t surprise me if Kyogo did make some sort of shock appearance.”
It would be a huge boost for Celtic if Furuhashi made it. He’s the Hoops’ top scorer with 11 goals in all competitions and, crucially, his nearest challenger – Jota, who has eight goals – is already confirmed out.
There’s a possibility, then, that they find themselves short of firepower against Shaun Maloney’s Hibs.
But as well as enhancing Celtic’s goalscoring threat, Furuhashi’s return would also surely improve morale in the camp. He’s a player team-mates can look to for decisive moments of quality in games like this.
Indeed, Jota has marvelled at his ‘unbelievable’ movements, and having at least one of the pair back would be a massive boost.
In other news, this journalist has offered the latest on Reo Hatate.
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