• Kyodo

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Nagoya Grampus have signed midfielder Takahiro Ogihara on a full transfer from J2 Cerezo Osaka, his new J. League first-division side announced Friday.

Ogihara, 24, was part of the Olympic team squad that finished fourth in London four years ago. He came through the ranks at Cerezo and has made 102 J1 appearances with eight goals.

The 184-cm left-footed player, who has one cap for the Japan senior side, saw his chances limited this season in Cerezo’s second year back in the second tier, making just four appearances and starting one.

“I’ve had a long thought on this decision. I strongly wanted to contribute for the team on the pitch to get back to J1, but the will to have a challenge also grew strong,” Ogihara said on Cerezo’s official website.

“It was a dream of mine to play for the top team of my favorite Cerezo Osaka. I’m leaving a side that I’m so emotionally attached to, but I’ve made this decision in order to grow as a player.

He will be handed the No. 31 shirt at Nagoya, struggling under new manager Takafumi Ogura, who saw his side finish 14th in the first stage.

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