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Nakamura, Marinos finalize contract for upcoming J.League campaign

Kyodo

Yokohama F.Marinos said Friday they have signed 2013 J.League Player of the Year Shunsuke Nakamura to a new one-year ¥130 million deal for the coming season.

The 35-year-old Nakamura, the first two-time winner and the oldest recipient of the J.League MVP award, played a pivotal role in helping Marinos win the Emperor’s Cup and finish runners-up in the J.League.

The former Japan international was also named MVP in 2000 during his first spell with Marinos under Ossie Ardiles before moving abroad to ply his trade in Italy (Reggina), Scotland (Celtic) and Spain (Espanyol). He returned to Yokohama in 2010.

Nakamura played in all but one game last season for Marinos, who lost the championship by a single point to Sanfrecce Hiroshima on the final weekend.

He scored 10 of Yokohama’s 49 goals, but was sidelined down the stretch with a gallbladder inflammation that forced him out of the Nov. 10 home game with Nagoya Grampus, which Marinos lost 2-1 — one of three defeats they suffered over the last four games of the campaign.