Soccer / J. League

FC Tokyo promotes teenagers Takefusa Kubo and Rei Hirakawa to first-team squad


FC Tokyo announced Wednesday that 16-year-old Takefusa Kubo and Rei Hirakawa, 17, will be moved to the top team.

The two teenagers will aim to make their J. League first division debuts with just three matches remaining in the league this season.

Kubo, a first-year high school student, became the second-youngest player to play for a J1 team when he took part in a league cup match in May. He was also the youngest to score in a J3 match, while playing for Tokyo’s U-23 side.

Kubo has played for Barcelona’s youth team, and had stints with Japan this year during the Under-20 World Cup and the Under-17 World Cup.

Hirakawa, currently in his second year in high school, has appeared in J3 matches after joining Tokyo’s youth team.

Kubo and Hirakawa are expected to be major contributors to Japan’s bid for a men’s soccer medal at the 2020 Tokyo Games.