||This article's lead section may not adequately summarize key points of its contents. (July 2012)|
Inamoto playing for Kawasaki Frontale in 2010
|Full name||Junichi Inamoto|
|Date of birth||18 September 1979|
|Place of birth||Yusui, Kagoshima, Japan|
|Height||1.81 m (5 ft 11 1⁄2 in)|
|Current club||Kawasaki Frontale|
|1985–1992||Seiei Gakuen SC|
|2001–2002||→ Arsenal (loan)||0||(0)|
|2002–2004||→ Fulham (loan)||41||(4)|
|2004–2006||West Bromwich Albion||28||(0)|
|2004–2005||→ Cardiff City (loan)||14||(0)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 1 December 2012 (UTC).
† Appearances (Goals).
Inamoto played for Japanese club Gamba Osaka during his last year of high school, signing with the club in 1997. He was then one of many high profile transfers of Asian players to Europe, signing with Arsenal of the Premier League. Inamoto scored two goals for the Japanese national team at the 2002 World Cup, but had already been released by Arsenal shortly before the tournament began. He was then signed by Fulham on a long-term loan deal from Gamba Osaka. Initially he settled well at the London club, garnering good notices as a tough-tackling midfielder with an eye for a spectacular goal. He became a cult favourite quickly, scoring four goals over the two legs of Fulham's Intertoto Cup final against Bologna, scoring once in the first leg and a hat trick in the second. Other notable goals he scored in his time for Fulham include goals against Tottenham Hotspur, Sunderland, Middlesbrough and also in the 3–1 win against Manchester United at Old Trafford in October 2003. He also scored in the FA Cup against Everton which commentator Barry Davies described as "a Japanese peach". However, he sustained a fractured tibia in an international friendly against England, and returned to Gamba Osaka to do promotional work. Fulham were interested in signing him once more, but concerns remained over his recovery from injury.
Inamoto signed with West Bromwich Albion for a decidedly small £200,000 transfer fee, which was only to be paid once he had made an appearance for the Midlands club. However, Gary Megson departed as West Bromwich Albion manager shortly afterwards, and successor Bryan Robson was unsure of the player. Inamoto was loaned to Cardiff City for the latter part of the 2004–05 season, and impressed, being recalled to play a role in West Brom's survival campaign in the Premiership. In 2005–06 he was a regular in the West Brom side, and was called up to the Japan squad for the 2006 FIFA World Cup, the first Albion player to play in the tournament for 20 years. Whilst at West Brom Inamoto scored once, an extra time winner in a League Cup tie against former club Fulham on 25 October 2005.
On 31 August 2006, he signed for Galatasaray. On 29 May 2007, it was revealed that he signed a two-year contract with German club Eintracht Frankfurt, joining on a free transfer. Inamoto was presented in a press conference joining fellow Japanese striker Naohiro Takahara in Frankfurt and was released on 30 May 2009. On 19 June 2009, French Ligue 1 side Rennes announced that Inamoto had signed a contract with them. He then signed for Kawasaki Frontale on 11 January 2010.
- 2000 Asian Cup (Champions)
- 2001 Confederations Cup (Runners-Up)
- 2002 FIFA World Cup
- 2003 Confederations Cup
- 2005 Confederations Cup
- 2006 FIFA World Cup
- 2010 FIFA World Cup
(correct as of 1 December 2012)
|Club performance||League||Cup||League Cup||Continental||Total|
|Japan||League||Emperor's Cup||League Cup||Asia||Total|
|1997||Gamba Osaka||J. League Division 1||27||3||3||0||6||0||-||36||3|
|England||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Europe||Total|
|2004–05||West Bromwich Albion||3||0||-||-||-||3||0|
|2005–06||West Bromwich Albion||Premier League||22||0||2||0||2||1||-||26||1|
|Turkey||League||Türkiye Kupası||League Cup||Europe||Total|
|2006–07||Galatasaray S.K.||Süper Lig||25||0||3||0||-||5||1||33||1|
|France||League||Coupe de France||Coupe de la Ligue||Europe||Total|
|2009–10||Stade Rennais||Ligue 1||5||0||-||-||-||5||0|
|Japan||League||Emperor's Cup||League Cup||Asia||Total|
|2010||Kawasaki Frontale||J. League Division 1||28||0||2||0||4||0||5||0||39||0|
* Includes Intertoto Cup
|1.||4 July 2001||Ōita, Japan||Yugoslavia||1–0||Won||Friendly Match|
|2.||4 June 2002||Saitama, Japan||Belgium||2–2||Drew||2002 FIFA World Cup Group Stage|
|3.||9 June 2002||Yokohama, Japan||Russia||1–0||Won||2002 FIFA World Cup Group Stage|
|4.||28 March 2003||Tokyo, Japan||Uruguay||2–2||Drew||Friendly Match|
|5.||9 September 2009||Utrecht, Netherlands||Ghana||4–3||Won||Friendly Match|
National team statistics
|Japan national team|
- AFC U-16 Championship Champions: 1994
- Asian Cup Champions: 2000
- FIFA World Youth Championship Runners-up: 1999
- FIFA Confederations Cup Runners-up: 2001
- FIFA World Cup: Round of 16 2002, 2010
- J. League Best XI: 2000
- Top Goal Scorer for Japan at the 2002 World Cup
- Nominated for Ballon d'Or: 2002
- "Arsenal release Inamoto". BBC Sport. 10 June 2002. Retrieved 30 April 2007.
- "Fulham force draw". BBC Sport. 13 August 2002. Retrieved 15 September 2009.
- "Fulham clinch Euro glory". BBC Sport. 27 August 2002. Retrieved 15 September 2009.
- "Fulham stun Spurs". BBC Sport. 11 September 2002. Retrieved 15 September 2009.
- "Inamoto sees off Sunderland". BBC Sport. 14 September 2002. Retrieved 15 September 2009.
- "Fulham hold on for win". BBC Sport. 16 August 2003. Retrieved 15 September 2009.
- "Fulham stun Man Utd". BBC Sport. 25 October 2003. Retrieved 14 August 2009.
- "Fulham 2–1 Everton (aet)". BBC Sport. 4 February 2004. Retrieved 15 September 2009.
- "Inamoto to leave Fulham". BBC Sport. 29 July 2004. Retrieved 30 April 2007.
- "Inamoto signs for West Brom". BBC Sport. 31 August 2004. Retrieved 30 April 2007.
- "Cardiff snap up Inamoto on loan". BBC Sport. 23 December 2004. Retrieved 30 April 2007.
- "Fulham 2–3 West Brom (aet)". BBC. 25 October 2005. Retrieved 22 April 2010.
- "Inamoto leaves Baggies for Turkey". BBC Sport. 1 September 2006. Retrieved 30 April 2007.
- "Inamoto kommt" (in German). kicker. 29 May 2007. Retrieved 29 May 2007.
- "Junichi Inamoto rejoint le Stade Rennais F.C." (in French). staderennais.com. 19 June 2009. Retrieved 19 June 2009.
- "Inamoto zurück nach Japan". Transfermarkt.de. Retrieved 14 June 2010.
- Junichi Inamoto – FIFA competition record
- Junichi Inamoto at National-Football-Teams.com
- Junichi Inamoto career stats at Soccerbase
- Player profile on Transfermarkt