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Celtic´s Nakamura seeks return to Japanese club

SoccerNews in Scottish Premier League 16 Sep 2008

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Japan and Celtic midfielder Shunsuke Nakamura says he wants to return to his his old J-League home, Yokohama Marinos, and possibly as early as January, Japanese media reported Tuesday.

“I'm thinking first about Marinos. I have no other team in mind,” the dead-ball specialist, and lynchpin of Japan's World Cup qualifying campaign, told Japanese reporters in Glasgow on Monday.

“Since Marinos raised me, it's quite natural for me to play there.”

Nakamura was earlier quoted by British media as saying he may return to Japan during the January transfer window, as he is tired of travelling long distances for international matches.

The 30-year-old joined Celtic on a three-year contract in July 2005 after three seasons with Italian club Reggina. His contract expires next summer and he has the option of staying for a further year.

Nakamura told the Japanese reporters that he was still figuring out how he could return.

“I talked about the possibility of going home in the middle of the season. It could be in January or in the summer,” he said. “It will depend on the negotiations.

“I thought about my family, my children and my age. I felt like going back to Japan at the peak of my career.”

Celtic chief executive Peter Lawwell told British media at the weekend: “Celtic would be more than happy for Shunsuke to stay here for as long as he wants and certainly we want him to remain here until the end of the season.

“But his agent has intimated Shunsuke would like to return to Japan at some point.”

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