• Kyodo

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Japan striker Yuya Kubo returned home on Wednesday pleased with his goal-scoring exploits over the second half of the season at Belgium first-division club Gent.

Kubo bagged 11 goals for Gent after joining the Jupiler League side from Swiss club Young Boys in January, raising hopes he can replicate that form for Japan when the Samurai Blue face Iraq next month in a World Cup final-round qualifier.

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