The Rumario Mill

The Rumario Mill

By Mario Kawata (follow Mario on twitter @MarioUrawa)

It’s been a big week of signings for J.League clubs, as clubs finalise preparations for the 2013. Back with all the news is our man Mario Kawata.

Major transfers announced

Kisho Yano has moved from Albirex to Nagoya

With preseason press conferences and training camps approaching, many of the transfers reported in the past few weeks have been officially confirmed this week.

Kawasaki Frontale announced three signings from relegated clubs - Consadole Sapporo midfielder Masaki Yamamoto, Gamba Osaka defender Sota Nakazawa and Vissel Kobe striker Yoshito Okubo.

In addition to Okubo, Vissel lost two key players as defender Masahiko Inoha moved to Jubilo Iwata and midfielder Takuya Nozawa returned to Kashima Antlers.

Albirex Niigata acquired South Korean defender Kim Kun-hoan from Yokohama FM and released striker Kisho Yano to Nagoya Grampus.


Kofu sign former Japanese internationals

Yokohama FM defender Naoaki Aoyama, Kashiwa Reysol midfielder Koki Mizuno and FC Tokyo midfielder Naotake Hanyu have been announced as new signing of Ventfore Kofu for their comeback season in J1. While all of them are established players with experience of national team call-up in the past, they spent the last season mainly sitting on the bench and it is uncertain how much help they can provide to the team which failed to keep their top scorer Davi.


Ulsan strengthen Japan connection

South Korean side Ulasan Hyundai are now known for their strong connection to Japan, winning AFC Champions League last year with a number of former J-Leaguers such as Lee Keun-ho, Rafinha and Maranhao, and they are eager to import more of Japanese football. In addition to Kashima Antlers midfielder Chikashi Masuda, FC Tokyo’s Brazilian striker Roberto Cesar and fitness coach Koichi Doizaki are joining the Asian champions.

Meanwhile Shimizu S-Pulse goalkeeper coach Dido Havenaar has been signed by Suwon Bluewings to join their coaching staff.


Dutra and Kinoshita fly to Europe

Masuda is not the only Kashima player moving overseas. Brazilian attacker Junior Dutra arrived in Europe on Thursday to sign with Belgian side Sporting Lokeren. It will be a free transfer as Kashima announced that his contract was not being renewed for the 2013 campaign.

It was also revealed on Friday that Yokohama FC Youth striker Kosuke Kinoshita had moved to German Bundesliga side SC Freiburg. The name of the under-19 Japan striker became famous among Japanese football fans last summer when Sports Hochi reported that he would sign for Manchester City. Kinoshita reportedly rejected the Manchester City offer to join Freiburg where he has better chance in the top team.

Also, VfB Stuttgart has completed the full transfer of defender Gotoku Sakai from Albirex Niigata. Sakai has been playing for Stuttgart on loan since last winter. Selling Japan’s backup fullback for the transfer fee of 1 million Euro in addition to the loan fee is not the worst business a J.League club has done with a German club.


Other news

• Catania striker Takayuki Morimoto has joined Al-Nasr of UAE;
• Nagoya Grampus midfielder Alessandro Santos has joined Tochigi SC;
• Gamba midfielder Akihiro Ienaga’s loan from Mallorca has been extended to the end of June;

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