Daizen Maeda was given a start by Hajime Moriyasu for the clash with Hansi Flick in Qatar, although his £4.6m Celtic teammate was nowhere to be seen after being left out of the 26-man World Cup squad entirely.
Celtic star Kyogo axed by Japan
Well, we aren’t quite sure what Moriyasu was thinking, as he also left Reo Hatate in Glasgow rather than naming him in the Japan World Cup squad.
Ahead of Japan’s opening game against Germany, Sutton addressed Kyogo’s World Cup snub in particular, although he didn’t actually mention Hatate – you can see his tweet in full below.
The 49-year-old’s tweet was then flooded by mentions of the Celtic No.41 in the comments section, with many supporters saying that Hatate’s World Cup rejection was far more surprising than Kyogo not being included.
In truth, it is baffling that neither travelled to Qatar, and if Japan fail to make it out of Group E, Moriyasu will surely have plenty of questions to answer.
However, his decisions were justified as Japan remarkably came from behind to secure a 2-1 win earlier today.
Kyogo & Hatate absence is good news for Celtic
Ange Postecoglou may have to put his man management skills to good use and pick his Japanese duo’s heads up after their World Cup exclusion, although he may selfishly be quite pleased to have them staying in Glasgow.
The pair are vital players at Celtic Park, and Postecoglou would have been devastated if they suffered any serious injuries at the World Cup, due to an overload in fixtures.
In truth, even if they had managed to avoid injuries, Celtic may also have found themselves fighting to keep Kyogo or Hatate had either been given the chance to shine on the world stage.
Hopefully, they aren’t too upset about it, and can channel any potential feelings of anger into some strong performances for the Bhoys.