Kyogo Furuhashi arrived at Celtic in the summer and in a short span of time has become perhaps the most important player in this team. We saw Ange Postecoglou’s side struggle badly when the Japanese star was on the sidelines for several weeks after picking up an injury and they have not looked as good going forward when he has not played through the middle either.
The recent 0-0 draw against Livingston was a frustrating result for Celtic. They had the opportunity to go top of the table if they had won but could only manage a point. Also, they had the chance to nick all three points late on when they were handed a penalty but Giorgos Giakoumakis ended up missing it.
One of the most talked about decisions on the night came much before that though, as Kyogo was left on the bench, with Giakoumakis starting at striker. It clearly did not work out. And while he was brought on later, he could not find the back of the net.
But Postecoglou has defended his decision to leave Kyogo on the bench. As reported by the Daily Record, the Celtic manager said:
"“We have to be really careful with Kyogo because he left Japan three quarters of the way through a season.“He’s come back, he’s had international football, he’s already had an injury.“I know people want him out there all the time and he’s done fantastically well every time he’s played, but we have to be careful as it’s just starting November and we can’t be just playing every game right through to April and May and expecting him to perform at the top level.”"
Kyogo was left on the bench when Celtic faced Livingston
It is safe to say that Kyogo is a massive part of this Celtic team and is expected to be integral to whatever success they end up having this season. But he will have to be benched from time to time.
On most weeks, Celtic play twice. And even before arriving at the club, Kyogo had played a large part of the J1 League campaign. Thus, it is simply not sustainable for him to continue playing every game.
We have already seen the club struggle when he has been out injured and nobody would want to see him pick another one. Thus, he will need rest from time to time. Whether Postecoglou picked the right game to do that is certainly up for debate.