Tsuzuki thanking fans during his retirement ceremony in 2011
Former Urawa Reds goalkeeper Ryota Tsuzuki will take part in April’s Saitama City Council elections, Sponichi reported on Wednesday.
The 36-year-old, who retired in 2011 after 14 seasons in the J-League, was best known for his time at Urawa. Tsuzuki was a key part of Urawa’s ‘Golden Age’, contributing to their first and only J1 League championship in 2006 as well as the 2007 AFC Champions League title. He also made six appearances for the Samurai Blue between 2001 and 2009.
Running as a representative of Japan’s Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), this will be Tsuzuki’s second attempt at public office after losing a 2011 election for the Saitama Prefectural Assembly.
Speaking to Sponichi, an LDP official hoped that the party could use Tsuzuki’s youth and name recognition as “a symbol of generational change.”