• Kyodo

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Team officials from Yokohama F. Marinos are in Scotland this week trying to work out a deal with Celtic that would bring Shunsuke Nakamura back to Japan.

But according to Monday’s online edition of the Evening Times, Celtic are adamant to extend the 29-year-old midfielder’s contract, which expires in two months, for another year.

Celtic manager Gordon Strachan was quoted as saying, “It’s a must that we keep Naka for another year. I’ve told him that this club is suited to him and that it’s a dream club for a player like him. He absolutely loves it here. And he knows how much the fans, the players and the coaches love him.”

Strachan did not deny the possibility of Nakamura returning to Japan in the future but said, “I know Naka does not want to go back home when he is unable to perform as he can. But he’s incredibly fit.”

Last Wednesday, Nakamura scored the opening goal in a 2-1 win over Rangers and was named man of the match after Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink headed home the winner in stoppage time.

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