Aguirre names Japan’s 23-man Asian Cup squad

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coach today announced his 23-man squad, who will travel to defend their title in next month’s Asian Cup in Australia.

Taken from the 50-man provisional squad named last week, the announcement – held at JFA House – featured a mix of talent based both locally and in Europe. While several players from J-League champions Gamba Osaka were rewarded for their rich veins of form and treble-winning season by making the cut, Emperor’s Cup MVP and J-League Best XI selection Takashi Usami was curiously omitted. Also missing out on the tournament is 2014 J-League Golden Boot winner and Kawasaki Frontale striker, Yoshito Okubo.

JAPAN’S 2015 AFC ASIAN CUP 23-MAN SQUAD:

Goalkeepers

Eiji KAWASHIMA (Standard Liege/Belgium)
Masaaki HIGASHIGUCHI (Gamba Osaka/Japan)
Shusaku NISHIKAWA (Urawa Reds/Japan)

Defenders

Yuto NAGATOMO (Internazionale/Italy)
Masato MORISHIGE (FC Tokyo/Japan)
Kosuke OTA (FC Tokyo/Japan)
Atsuto UCHIDA (FC Schalke 04/Germany)
Maya YOSHIDA (Southampton FC/England)
Tsukasa SHIOTANI (Sanfrecce Hiroshima/Japan)
Gotoku SAKAI (VfB Stuttgart/Germany)
Gen SHOJI (Kashima Antlers/Japan)

Midfielders

Yasuhito ENDO (Gamba Osaka/Japan)
Yasuyuki KONNO (Gamba Osaka/Japan)
Makoto HASEBE (Eintracht Frankfurt/Germany)
Shinji KAGAWA (Borussia Dortmund/Germany)
Hiroshi KIYOTAKE (Hannover 94/Germany)
Gaku SHIBASAKI (Kashima Antlers/Japan)

Attackers

Yohei TOYODA (Sagan Tosu/Japan)
Shinji OKAZAKI (1.FSV  Mainz 05/Germany)
Keisuke HONDA (AC Milan/Italy)
Yu KOBAYASHI (Kawasaki Frontale/Japan)
Takashi INUI (Eintracht Frankfurt/Germany)
Yoshinori MUTO (FC Tokyo/Japan)

 

Samurai Blue will base their Asian Cup operations in the Hunter Valley’s Cessnock and will arrive on January 2. They will play training matches against FIFA Club World Cup participants Auckland City FC and National Premier Leagues side Lambton Jaffas behind closed doors before they begin the tournament in Newcastle, against 2014 AFC Challenge Cup winners Palestine on the 12th.

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