• Kyodo News

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Japan national team coach Alberto Zaccheroni is to head to Europe to check on Keisuke Honda and his other stars playing on the continent in December, Japan Football Association technical director Hiromi Hara said Thursday.

The Italian and his coaching staff are likely to make the trip to watch the likes of CSKA Moscow midfielder Honda, Borussia Dortmund’s Shinji Kagawa and Cesena defender Yuto Nagatomo after the J. League season wraps up on Dec. 4.

Hara also said Zaccheroni may during the trip ask his Euro stars’ respective clubs for cooperation in releasing them for national team duty at the Asian Cup in Qatar in January.

Japan, who gave Zaccheroni the perfect start as national team boss with a shock 1-0 win over Argentina earlier this month, are scheduled to hold a training camp ahead of the Asian Cup from Dec 26-27.

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