• Kyodo

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J. League second-division side Vegalta Sendai has fired Slovenian manager Zdenko Verdenik and named former Japan defender Satoshi Tsunami as his successor, club president Yoshitaka Nagawa said Saturday.

Tsunami, 43, played for Japan 80 times from the 1980s through the mid-1990s and currently serves as manager of Verdy’s youth team. He will manage a J. League side for the first time with Sendai. He joined Yomiuri FC, the forerunner of J. League first-division club Tokyo Verdy, in 1980 and also played for Verdy, Avispa Fukuoka and Bellmare Hiratsuka during his playing career. Sendai failed to make a swift return to the top flight after finishing sixth in the second division on 59 points from 44 matches, 46 points adrift of champion Kawasaki Frontale.

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