Japan’s Italian manager Alberto Zaccheroni believes that Manchester United target Shinji Kagawa has the ability to succeed at Old Trafford.
According to multiple media outlets, including Goal.com, the 23-year-old Borussia Dortmund star has agreed to join the English Premier League runners-up for a reported transfer fee of £12-17 million.
“I haven’t offered him my congratulations yet. I’ve only said to him ‘good luck’ because this is just the start for him. I know he’ll need results to be deemed a success at Manchester United,” said Zaccheroni.
“But I fully expect to congratulate him three years from now because he clearly has the mental strength and the technical ability to make it there.”
Since arriving at Dortmund from Cerezo Osaka in the Japanese J League, Kagawa has been quite the talisman for the Bundesliga outfit.
The Japan international bagged eight goals and one assist in 18 appearances in the German Bundesliga in his debut campaign in 2010-11, while adding two goals in six UEFA Europa League starts.
Kagawa took his game to another level in 2011-12, tallying 21 goals and 10 assists in 49 appearances for club and country.
In addition, Japan’s star man found the back of the net in his team’s 6-0 rout of Jordan in 2014 World Cup Qualifying on 8 June.
The midfielder’s transfer to Manchester United could prove to be a monumental event in Japanese football, according to Alberto Zaccheroni.
“I think his transfer is great not only for himself but for all football in this country,” added the Italian.
“I’ve been in Japan for almost two years now and in that short period of time, two players have signed with the biggest clubs in the world – [Yuto] Nagatomo went to Inter and now Kagawa to United. It’s proof the Japanese are developing players the right way.”
Japan look to be the dominant force in Asian football at the moment and in the future, with their 6-0 win over Jordan surely confirming exactly that.
Furthermore, CSKA Moscow midfielder Keisuke Honda bagged a hat-trick in Japan’s triumph over Jordan.
Honda is perhaps best known for his impressive display in the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, where he tallied two goals and one assists in 4 games.
He’s just 25-years-of-age and is just one of Japan’s premier young talents.
Look for the three-headed monster of Honda, Kagawa and Arsenal starlet Ryo Miyaichi to spearhead Japan’s attack for the next several years.
All things considered, don’t be surprised if the Japanese pull off a few upsets at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
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