Off-season Roundup: Ken Tokura becomes the first signing during the winter window

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Here is the summary about Cerezo Osaka’s transfer and contract news coming out since the last post.

  • Ins – Ken Tokura joins Cerezo Osaka from Hokkaido Consadole Sapporo on a permanent deal. The 32-year-old striker is the team’s top goalscorer in the 2018 season after scoring 12 goals for the Hokkaido side. Cerezo pays nothing to acquire him as his contract expires at the end of the season, but his salary is estimated to be 75 million yen, which is not cheap. Also, Mitsuru Maruoka returns from loan to Renofa Yamaguchi FC. Maruoka spent a year at Yamaguchi but failed to play regular football, starting only in 7 games and scoring a goal.
  • Outs – Three key players – Kenyu Sugimoto, Kazuya Yamamura, and Hotaru Yamaguchi – leaves the club to join Urawa Reds, Kawasaki Frontale, and Vissel Kobe respectively. In addition, Taiga Maekawa and Honoya Shoji, who were loaned out this season, will again play on loan at Avispa Fukuoka and Oita Trinita respectively.
  • Contract renewal – Ryuji Sawakami, Kim Jin-hyeon, Matej Jonjic, Atomu Tanaka, and Ayumu Seko will play for Cerezo Osaka in the upcoming season after renewing their contracts with the club.
  • Rumors – Especially after three players’ departure was announced, there have been a couple of transfer rumors about Cerezo Osaka. Japanese media outlets mentioned the names of Sho Inagaki (Sanfrecce Hiroshima) and Koji Miyoshi (Kawasaki Frontale) as Cerezo’s targets, while there is a rumor that some players may join from Tokyo Verdy, Miguel Angel Lotina’s former side. Especially, Shion Inoue’s name is frequently seen on Twitter due to an Instagram Stories post by one of his teammates. Also, Brazilian journalists reported that Cerezo made an offer for Vasco da Gama defensive midfielder Leandro Desábato and although it was once rejected by the player, Cerezo improved their offer and he accepted it. It is said that the transfer fee is 800 thousand US dollars and Cerezo pay him three times what he is getting at Vasco. If these are true, official confirmation is expected to come soon.

 

Check out the current list of the ins and outs here.