BEING a big fish in a small pond doesn’t mean you are impervious to any waves that may come your way, and this week, Japan’s head coach Hajime Moriyasu caused a fair bit of tumult as he waded into Scottish football’s own little biosphere.

While explaining why he had yet again left red-hot Celtic pair Reo Hatate and Kyogo Furuhashi out of his squad for their nation’s forthcoming friendly matches against Uruguay and Colombia, Moriyasu cited the quality of the league his players ply their trade in as a factor in his decision-making process.

Despite the inclusion of World Cup squad member Daizen Maeda, those remarks sparked some concern among followers of Celtic, who fear that two of their star men might look to move on at some stage to a bigger league if they are to have a chance of fulfilling their international ambitions.

READ MORE: SPFL accused of leaving £20m on table by not taking TV deal to tender

Their manager at club level, Ange Postecoglou, has no such worries. If the standard of the league Celtic play in was an impediment to playing international football, he argues, then not only would Maeda not be involved with the Samurai Blue, but his Lennoxtown training ground would be a great deal busier next week than it is going to be.

When asked if Moriyasu’s comments were a source of concern, Postecoglou said: “No mate, you come here next week and there will be few players in the building because the rest of them will be on international duties.

“We had four or five at the World Cup and they were all outstanding. We have had players recently - Josip Juranovic and Moritz Jenz - who have gone to the Bundesliga and are regular starters.

“I don’t think it is relevant at all, and that is not to discount the opinion of the Japanese team manager, that is for him to decide how he selects players. From my perspective, the level of the individual performance in terms of national team selection has very little to do with the competition.

“Next week, we have multiple players away, and the World Cup is a pretty good reference point, mate.

“I don’t think anyone would say that guys like Aaron (Mooy) and Cameron (Carter-Vickers) and Josip (Juranovic) and Daizen (Maeda) and Alistair (Johnston), guys who were part of our squad, didn’t perform at the highest level.

“So, if you want a reference point, that’s the one you should look at.”

That’s not to say that Postecoglou doesn’t have sympathy for his players or share some of the wider befuddlement in Glasgow around their inability to suitably impress Moriyasu in order to make his squad.

READ MORE: Old Firm fan ban as Rangers and Celtic make away support call

The Celtic manager feels though that both players will react to their latest international setback in a similar way as they did to being left out of Japan’s World Cup squad; with a determination to get even better.

“I don’t feel sorry for them, but you do feel for them,” he said.

“There is no greater disappointment for any footballer than missing a World Cup but if you see how they have reacted to that, it is fair to say that they have used it to take their game to another level, both Reo and Kyogo.

“They will keep pushing on. They are both top quality players with heaps of improvement in them. “They’ll both reach the very top of the game and these things are just little tests along the way. For every footballer there are always different challenges for them, and this is it.

“But if you look at the way they have responded to missing out on the World Cup, if anything it motivates them to keep pushing on any being the best they can be.”

Staying on international matters, Postecoglou says that both Cameron Carter-Vickers and Greg Taylor will be available for today’s game against Hibernian at Celtic Park, despite the USA and Scotland head coaches respectively leaving them out of their squads for next week’s fixtures.

He explained that the decision in both cases, with both players said to be ‘managing issues’, was entirely at their national team manager’s discretion.

“In terms of the national team, it is a pretty straightforward process,” he said.

“With every player we provide medical information and current status from the physical perspective. We do that for all national teams and then it is up to them to navigate that and make a decision on whether they call up the player or not.

“With Greg and Cam, they’ve got some small issues they are managing, but as we can see they are playing. It comes down to the decision by the international manager whether this window is one they want the boys in, or will they be better served by using this window to get them back to full fitness.

“From our perspective, we manage the players so that they are in good physical condition and both Greg and Cam are available for tomorrow, and will play.

“We can’t [refuse to release them], FIFA law and international windows. We have a couple of players injured and national teams are entitled to call them up and have them assessed by their own doctors and I’m fine with that. It’s all good.

“We are in constant contact with international managers, we work together and they try and do what is the best interests of the players.

“Obviously these games, for the most part, are not friendly games and then the decision is up to the national team for best course of action.”