Following an injury to Kyoto Sanga’s Takashi Nakamura during the club’s 4-2 defeat to FC Tokyo in the 2011 Emperor’s Cup, J’s Goal confirms that Nakamura will undergo surgery to a fractured cheek on 17 January 2012. Should surgery prove successful it is expected that Nakamura’s recovery will take approximately one month.
FC Tokyo became the first J.League Division 2 club in Japanese football history to win the traditional season-ending Emperor’s Cup, and with the victory clinched Japan’s remaining place in the AFC Champions League, rounding off a successful season for the Chofu-based outfit following their championship victory and promotion to J.League Division 1. FC Tokyo will begin their Champions League fixtures in March with a fixture against Australia’s Brisbane Roar, with Ulsan Hyundai of South Korea and China’s Beijing Guoan to follow in Group F.
In further news from J’s Goal, Yuki Nakajima of Vegalta Sendai will be moving to Montedio Yamagata. The 27 year-old forward from Toyama, who scored 41 goals in 241 appearances during his time with Vegalta, will begin the 2012 season in J.League Division Two.
The Daily Yomiuri confirms that the protracted transfer negotiations between Vissel Kobe and Urawa Red Diamonds for Popó may be coming to an end. The move was first mooted in early December 2011 for the 33 year-old winger, who scored seven goals in thirty-two matches in the 2011 J.League season, and should the move be completed Vissel’s sole remaining Brazlian player will exit the club.
The Daily Mainichi turns its attention to managerial matters, confirming that Jorginho is the new head coach of Kashima Antlers, replacing Osvaldo de Oliveira at the club from Ibaraki Prefecture after a disappointing sixth place in the J.League and failing to qualifying for the AFC Champions League. The former Brazilian right-back, who appeared for the A Seleção 64 times and featured in all the matches in the 1994 FIFA World Cup winning side, moves from Figueirense where he managed the Florianópolis side to a seventh-place finish in Série A.
Finally, the Japan Times reports that Yasukiyuki Konno is set for a move from FC Tokyo to Gamba Osaka, despite FC Tokyo’s promotion to J.League Division 1. The 28 year-old utility player, whose versatility has been rewarded by being the only Samurai Blue to not be substituted during Alberto Zaccheroni’s reign as national team coach, played a key role in FC Tokyo’s title-winning season.