- Mar 6, 2007
I know we are supposed to discuss 'notable league' rolleyes players here, but considering the emergence of Japanese players into Europe in recent years, and taking into account our non-EU regulations, I'll do a run down of the current young J. League Japanese talents who have not already been snapped up by European clubs.
Hiroki Sakai (Kashiwa Reysol >>> Hannover 96)
Hiroshi Kiyotake (Cerezo Osaka >>> 1. FC Nürnberg)
Naoki Yamada (Urawa Reds)
Yuji Ono (Yokohama F-Marinos >>> Standard Liège)
Genki Haraguchi (Urawa Reds)
Yuya Kubo (Kyoto Sanga)
Akimi Barada (Kashiwa Reysol)
Yosuke Kashiwagi (Urawa Reds)
Junya Tanaka (Kashiwa Reysol)
Hideki Ishige (Shimizu S-Pulse)
Gaku Shibasaki (Kashima Antlers)
---------- Post added 22.02.2012 at 11:50 ----------
Hiroki Sakai 酒井 宏樹 - Kashiwa Reysol
Position: DR (DC, DL, MR)
Age: 21 (12/04/1990)
Extremely direct and wiry attacking fullback, his technique looks sound in dribbling, passing and crossing. Is physically strong for his position, and he often shows it in direct tussles both on the ground and in the air. He also has considerable speed both with and without the ball. He would ideally be used in a similar position to Maggio at Napoli. I don't think he would have many problems dealing with the more physical side of European football. Tactically he would need some work.
Brazilian club Santos were so impressed when they played against him that they tried to sign him, but he has stayed put for now.
---------- Post added 22.02.2012 at 11:51 ----------
Hiroshi Kiyotake 清武 弘嗣 - Cerezo Osaka
Position: AM (RM, LM)
Age: 22 (12/11/1989)
Intelligent attacking midfield player who has vision that you cannot teach, as well as the technique to execute passes and get off shots from various ranges and angles. He battles hard for his size and will often wriggle away from defenders with his low gravity and close control. His speed is fairly good, but his acceleration and quick feet are more useful to escape opponents in short bursts. Like many Japanese midfielders he has a fairly decent weaker foot also.
I believe Stuttgart and a couple of other German teams are interested in him, I'd be surprised if Cerezo hold onto him past this summer.