MAINZ, GERMANY – Eager to put a frustrating spell at Stuttgart behind him, Japan international striker Shinji Okazaki says he has a point to prove after being introduced to the press by new club Mainz on Saturday.
“As a striker I did not make the grade at Stuttgart,” said Okazaki, who scored just one goal in 25 league appearances last season. “I could not take the chances that came my way and lost the trust of the manager. I have realized in Germany the importance of results.
“I have mixed feelings but I am grateful to Stuttgart. (When I play against them) I want to give it my all and show them I can play. I am in a new environment now and as a striker I want to prove my worth and produce results.”
The 27-year-old Okazaki, who scored twice for Japan at the Confederations Cup in Brazil last month, has joined Mainz on a three-year deal for an undisclosed fee.
“We (Japan) lost three straight games at the Confederations Cup and that was disappointing. I scored two goals and that was good for my confidence and made me happy but I want my goals to help the team win,” he said.