Daizen Maeda: Celtic target speaks on transfer interest, scoring goals and 64 sprints per game

Daizen Maeda has revealed he is aware of the reports of Celtic’s interest in the player.

Daizen Maeda has been linked with a move to Celtic. (Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images)
Daizen Maeda has been linked with a move to Celtic. (Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images)

Ange Postecoglou has been linked with a move for the 24-year-old Japanese international who he managed at Yokohama F. Marinos.

The striker has scored 18 goals in 35 appearances this season.

His form led to involvement in the Olympics in Tokyo earlier this year.

"My job is just to concentrate on playing and hopefully scoring goals for Yokohama,” he said.

"I am trying not to think too much about the speculation.”

He added: "I always think I can score goals in any match and that's all I am thinking about at the moment. I am trying to get into the Japan team for the World Cup qualifiers too. Of course, if I keep scoring goals then good things will happen.”

One of Maeda's key attributes is his pace.

The striker holds eight of the top ten places for the number of sprints in a game with the record being 64 in one match.

"I wasn't aware of the number of sprints at first, but the supporters sent me data on the number of official J.League sprints,” he told Sportiva Shueisha. “I want to fill it all with my name.

"I've been fast since I was a kid. I've always been in first place so much that I don't remember taking second place. Maybe because my parents were all-around sports, I think it was inherited.

"My dad was pretty fast, but when I was in the nursery, I ran ahead of him!"

"I like to be able to run all year round, even in the summer, but I think that physical strength and speed were probably cultivated when I was a kid.

"I ran around barefoot and climbed mountains without wearing shoes. I wonder if that is my base now.”

Maeda delivered a very modest answer, bordering on self-deprecating when asked what he provides the team.

"Run for the team, do it crazy,” he said. “If you lose it, you're done. I'm not a good player, so I have to work hard all the time to compete with a good player.”

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