• Kyodo


Former Sanfrecce Hiroshima manager Hajime Moriyasu is likely to coach the Japanese men’s soccer team at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, sources close to the situation said Saturday.

The Japan Football Association is expected to make a formal request shortly to the 49-year-old, who has apparently shown interest during informal negotiations, and the move could be finalized possibly at the JFA’s board meeting in October, the sources said.

Moriyasu coached Sanfrecce from 2012 and led the team to the J. League championship three times, including back-to-back titles in his first two years on the job, but resigned in July this year to take responsibility for the J1 side’s poor performance this season.

As a player, he represented Japan as a defensive midfielder.

Full-fledged preparations for Japan’s under-23 team toward the Tokyo Summer Games are set to begin at the end of this year, with the Asian championship for the age group scheduled to take place in January in China.

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