Celtic have concluded the triple signing of Daizen Maeda, Yosuke Ideguchi and Reo Hatate from the Japanese J League.
Maeda, a 24-year-old striker, comes from Yokohama F. Marinos, where he previously played under Celtic manager Angel Postecoglou.
Ideguchi, a 25-year-old midfielder, leaves Gamba Osaka to join Celtic, while Hatate, a 24-year-old who can play on the left or in midfield, joins from Japan champions Kawasaki Frontale.
Postecoglou told Celtic’s website: “We’re really excited to bring these guys to Celtic and I think they are players that will get our fans excited.
“It is clear that I am well aware of their attributes and I think that by bringing the three to the club we bring even more quality, personality and energy to the team to work with the players who already have so well done for us this season.
“They’re all really at the peak of their careers, ambitious to be more successful and I’m sure at this particular time we’ll have their best years.
“I am delighted to have secured these players so early in the transfer window. I look forward to working with them, and I, my team behind the scenes and the rest of the team will make sure to help them out. install at Celtic as quickly as possible. “
Maeda joins Celtic after a 2021 season that saw him finish top scorer in the J League with 23 goals.
The forward – who has two caps for Japan – will initially join Celtic on loan before making his transfer permanent and signing a long-term deal this summer.
Ideguchi has already spent 18 months as a Leeds player but has never made an appearance for the club, and returned to the Gamba Osaka childhood squad in August 2019.
The midfielder has 15 caps and two goals for Japan, and has signed a four-and-a-half-year contract at Parkhead.
Hatate also signed a four-and-a-half-year contract and joined Celtic after helping Kawasaki Frontale win their second consecutive Japanese title.
He has yet to make his senior debut for Japan but was part of their U23 squad which reached the semi-finals of their home Olympics this summer.
The trio will be registered as Celtic players in early January – subject to international clearance – with the club hoping to join the squad early in the new year.
Scottish Premiership: How is your club’s season going?
We asked former Aberdeen and St Johnstone boss Derek McInnes to take a look at how each club is doing and what might be in store for us once the action resumes after the winter break …
Celtic were the complete opposite of Rangers. Rangers were settled and had the confidence to win, Celtic were all over the place and had a lot of work to do before the start of the season.
The managerial affairs that dragged on did not help much but since the arrival of Ange Postecoglou it must be said that he has been very confident in his work. He is very motivated and very sure of what he expects from the team.
The rookies have been good and I think if he has the chance to go add more rookies in January, Celtic support will be confident in what they have already achieved.
Getting the first trophy helps of course, but the league is normally where it is decided whether the campaign was successful or not.
I think if Postecoglou receives the funds to strengthen himself, he has the capacity to have a really strong Celtic XI. Where they fall short of the Rangers is in the depth of the team.
We know the struggles with Covid, the upcoming Africa Cup of Nations, and the normal injuries and suspensions – but having a strong squad is essential for Celtic to try to overcome a challenge.