Soccer / J. League Aug 14, 2019

Gotoku Sakai to join Vissel

Following more than 200 games in the German first and second divisions, former Japan defender Gotoku Sakai will return to the J. League with Vissel Kobe, the club said Wednesday. The 28-year-old right-back, a member of Japan's past two World Cup squads, joins Vissel on ...

Japan's Gotoku Sakai retires from international duty

Soccer / World Cup Jul 7, 2018

Japan's Gotoku Sakai retires from international duty

Defender Gotoku Sakai has become the third Japanese player to retire from international duty on the heels of the squad's heartbreaking World Cup exit following a last-gasp defeat to Belgium. "I have always tried to support the team, but I couldn't return the trust with ...

Defender Gotoku Sakai called up for upcoming friendlies in Belgium

Soccer Mar 20, 2018

Defender Gotoku Sakai called up for upcoming friendlies in Belgium

Hamburg SV defender Gotoku Sakai has been added to the Japan squad for the upcoming friendlies to be held in Belgium, the Japan Football Association said late Monday evening. Sakai was called up after right-back candidates Hiroki Sakai and Wataru Endo sustained injuries, leaving them ...

Soccer Nov 18, 2016

Sakai named new Hamburg captain

Japan defender Gotoku Sakai has been appointed the new captain of SV Hamburg, the German first-division side announced on Thursday. Markus Gisdol handed the role to the 25-year-old Sakai, who takes over in an unusual mid-season switch from Johan Djourou. "It is a great honor for ...

Japan squad named for World Cup qualifiers

Soccer Mar 17, 2016

Japan squad named for World Cup qualifiers

ADO Den Haag striker Mike Havenaar returned to the national team fold and two-time World Cup goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima won a recall as Japan coach Vahid Halilhodzic on Thursday named his squad for the upcoming World Cup qualifiers at home to Afghanistan and Syria. Yu ...

Sakai to join Hamburg from Stuttgart: report

Soccer Jul 1, 2015

Sakai to join Hamburg from Stuttgart: report

Japan defender Gotoku Sakai will join SV Hamburg from Bundesliga rival Stuttgart on a three-year deal worth €700,000 ($780,000), according to a report Wednesday in German daily Bild. The 24-year-old Sakai will either move this weekend to Hamburg or join up with the team at ...