New Celtic signing Reo Hatate has spoken about his excitement at joining the club and says he’s keen to take up an attacking role in the team.
The 24-year-old was one of a trio of signings from Japan that Celtic announced at the end of December, alongside Daizen Maeda and Yosuke Ideguchi.
The midfielder arrives with a burgeoning reputation after winning back-to-back titles with Kawasaki Frontale, and is relishing the chance to show his new club’s supporters what he can do.
In the J-League, Hatate took up several different positions within the side and he believes that being a utility man has helped him develop and improve as a player.
Having seen Ange Postecoglou’s Yokohama F Marinos team regularly before the Australian left to manage Celtic, he’s familiar with the style his new boss wants to play, saying it’s “fun for the audience” and he believes he can make a contribution by getting forward.
“Being able to play in different positions has given me confidence as a footballer,” he said. “With this team, I want to be able to bring out the best in my style of play and contribute to the attacking side of things a bit more.
‘I hope to be the best version of myself so I can contribute towards Celtic and I want the fans to see how I play and to know my style as soon as possible.’
“I will do my best in training and in the games and I’m really looking forward to it.”
Hatate has begun training with his new teammates but won’t get a chance at competitive football just yet, with the league not returning to action until January 17. The midfielder says he is eagerly anticipating the chance to experience Celtic Park with a full support.
He said: ‘I’ve only been able to see Celtic Park on videos and pictures, so I’m really excited to finally be able to experience this great stadium and I’m extremely looking forward to meeting the fans and playing in front of them.’