Okubo in squad for Japan friendly versus Iceland
Striker Yoshito Okubo will headline Japan’s squad in an
international friendly against Iceland on Feb. 24.
Japan coach Alberto Zaccheroni announced the squad on Friday,
naming only domestic players for the match against Iceland in
Zaccheroni gave first call-ups to five players, including
18-year-old striker Yuya Kubo of second-division Kyoto Sanga.
The 29-year-old Okubo, who played for Japan at the 2010 World
Cup, has not played for the national team since Zaccheroni took
over from Takeshi Okada.
”Toward the end of last season Okubo showed me what a quality
player he is and what he is capable of,” Zaccheroni said. ”I
don’t need to tell you all what a player he is because you all saw
how well he did at the World Cup.”
Striker Hidetaka Kanazono, who scored 12 league goals for Jubilo
Iwata last season, and Vegalta Sendai goalkeeper Takuto Hayashi
have also been given their first call-ups for the national
Goalkeepers: Takuto Hayashi (Vegalta Sendai), Kaito Yamamoto
(Shimizu S-Pulse), Shusaku Nishikawa (Sanfrecce Hiroshima).
Defenders: Yuichi Komano (Jubilo Iwata), Daiki Iwamasa (Kashima
Antlers), Yasuyuki Konno (Gamba Osaka), Yuzo Kurihara (Yokohama F
Marinos), Naoya Kondo (Kashiwa Reysol), Masahiko Inoha (Vissel
Kobe), Ryota Moriwaki (Sanfrecce Hiroshima), Tomoaki Makino (Urawa
Midfield: Yasuhito Endo (Gamba Osaka), Kengo Nakamura (Kawasaki
Frontale), Yuki Abe (Urawa Reds), Chikashi Masuda (Kashima
Antlers), Yosuke Kashiwagi (Urawa Reds), Ryota Isomura (Nagoya
Grampus), Gaku Shibasaki (Kashima Antlers).
Forwards: Naohiro Ishikawa (FC Tokyo), Ryoichi Maeda (Jubilo
Iwata), Yoshito Okubo (Vissel Kobe), Jungo Fujimoto (Nagoya
Grampus), Junya Tanaka (Kashiwa Reysol), Hidetaka Kanazono (Jubilo
Iwata), Yuya Kubo (Kyoto Sanga)