How Kyogo Furuhashi claimed a remarkable 97-year Celtic first

There was no sense of the ordinary in the fashion with which Kyogo Furuhashi introduced himself to the home denizens at Celtic Park on Sunday.

Remember the name, remember the accomplishment...Celtic's Kyogo Furuhashi as he celebrates the first of his hat-tricks strikes that has allowed him to reset a more than century old piece of club history. (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)

Yet just how extraordinary was his feat of bagging a hat-trick when first gracing the pitch at Parkhead in the 6-0 smashing of Dundee is demonstrated by the fact it is almost a century since a similar accomplishment was last witnessed at the arena. That is down to Furuhashi becoming the first Celtic player to score a hat-trick on his home debut since the William Fleming bagged no fewer than four goals in a 6-0 win over Kilmarnock on November 8, 1924.

Great credit must go to The Celtic Star website’s Liam Kelly for his forensic trawl through the archives to identify Fleming’s feat, in his first club outing. It was one that escaped our Scotsman footballing archivist’s notice, leading to the little known Fleming being cruelly overlooked as we identified the great Tommy McInally as the last Celtic player before Furuhashi to notched a triple in his home bow - McInally claiming his triple in a 3-1 league opening win over Clydebank on August 10, 1919.

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None of which in any way diminishes the achievement of the 26-year-old Japanese forward, who arrived at the club in a £4.6m deal from Vissel Kobe in his homeland as the player pinpointed by Ange Postecoglou as a crucial building block in his rebuild. He has proved so with four goals in two starts. His first start - the scoring contribution to the 4-2 Europa League qualifying victory in Jablonec three days before his latest exploits – came after he made his debut as a substitute in the defeat away to Hearts a week earlier.

The sequence assures Furuhashi another badge of honour, in that none of Celtic’s celebrated scorers across the past four decades has snared a hat-trick in as few as three appearances. Leigh Griffiths claimed a first triple in his fifth outing, Odsonne Edouard and Craig Bellamy in their seventh, Gary Hooper and John Guidetti in their eighth, Moussa Dembele and John Hartson in their 11th, and Jorge Cadete and Dariuz Dziekanowski - who permed three goals into four, in a 5-4 loss to Partizan Belgrade in 1989 - in their 12th. Meanwhile, it took prized plunderer Henrik Larsson 14 months to net one hat-trick. Thereafter, he didn’t stop, his goal-strewn seven-year stint bringing 15 hat-tricks, two of these four-goal hauls.

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