Kagawa training with Manchester United in 2012
|Date of birth||17 March 1989|
|Place of birth||Kobe, Hyōgo, Japan|
|Height||172 cm (5 ft 8 in)|
|Playing position||Attacking midfielder|
|Current club||Manchester United|
|1999–2001||Kobe NK Football Club|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 11 January 2014.
† Appearances (Goals).
Shinji Kagawa (香川真司 Kagawa Shinji?) (born 17 March 1989) is a Japanese footballer who plays for English club Manchester United and the Japanese national team - Kagawa began his professional career in his homeland with Cerezo Osaka before joining German club Borussia Dortmund in 2010. After two years with Dortmund, Kagawa signed for Manchester United on a four-year contract. A goal-scoring midfielder, he is known for his "vision, technique, movement and deft passing."
- 1 Club career
- 2 International career
- 3 Style of play
- 4 Career statistics
- 5 Honours
- 6 Notes
- 7 References
- 8 External links
Kagawa started playing football at the age of five. He joined Marino Football Club from 1994 to 1999, Kobe NK Football Club from 1999 to 2001, and FC Miyagi Barcelona in Sendai from 2001 to 2005.
Cerezo Osaka noticed his talent and signed him at the age of 17. He was the first player in Japan to sign a professional contract before graduating high school, except players promoted from youth teams of the J. League clubs. In 2007, he gained a regular position but the club missed the promotion to the J. League Division 1. It was 2009 that he became the top scorer of J. League Division 2 and recognized attention.
In the summer of 2010, Kagawa transferred from Cerezo to Borussia Dortmund for €350,000. The relatively modest cost of the transfer was because of a release clause in Kagawa's contract with Cerezo, which allowed him to leave the club cheaply if he had an opportunity to play in Europe.
On 23 August 2010, he made his debut appearance in the German Bundesliga, starting for his new club Dortmund. After scoring his first two competitive goals for the club in the UEFA Europa League qualifying tie against Qarabağ FK, he continued this form with his first goal in the Bundesliga match against VfL Wolfsburg, which Dortmund won 2–0. In the Revierderby against arch-rivals Schalke 04, which Dortmund won 3–1, Kagawa claimed pre-match that he would score two goals; he managed to indeed score twice, making him a fan favourite in the process.
Kagawa missed half of the Bundesliga season because of an injury he picked up on international duty with Japan, but managed to score eight goals in 18 appearances. His strong effort in the first half of the season helped his side finish as champions of the Bundesliga, and he was even named in the Bundesliga Best XI.
Kagawa was back in time for the start of the 2011–12 Bundesliga campaign and quickly found his way back into the starting line-up. Kagawa scored his first goal of the new Bundesliga season on 18 September, coming on in a disappointing 2–1 loss to Hannover 96, as Dortmund gave up two goals in the last three minutes. On 22 October, Kagawa opened the scoring in the seventh minute as Dortmund crushed 1. FC Köln 5–0 in front of 80,200 home fans at the Signal Iduna Park. Kagawa scored again on 5 November, as Dortmund brushed aside VfL Wolfsburg 5–1 and moved within two points of league leaders Bayern Munich. Kagawa scored a late consolation against Arsenal in a 2–1 loss in the group stage of the Champions League.
On 28 January 2012, Kagawa scored twice in Dortmund's 3–1 win against Hoffenheim. Kagawa scored the only goal of the game against Werder Bremen on 17 March, heading in a pass from İlkay Gündoğan in the eighth minute. Kagawa scored two goals in Dortmund's 6–1 thrashing of Cologne on 25 March, keeping Dortmund five points ahead of Bayern in the title race. Kagawa won the Bundesliga with Borussia Dortmund in 2012 as they set a Bundesliga record scoring the most points in a season in the Bundesliga, with 81. Kagawa also scored a goal and provided an assist for Dortmund against rivals Bayern Munich in the 2012 DFB-Pokal Final.
On 5 June 2012, it was announced by Manchester United that the club had reached an agreement with Borussia Dortmund and Kagawa for his transfer, a deal that made him the first Japanese player to join the club. The transfer was completed on 22 June after Kagawa passed his medical at Manchester United and received his UK work permit. On 3 July, it was revealed that Kagawa would wear the number 26 shirt for United. Kagawa spoke about his former club, Borussia Dortmund, saying, "I will carry this club, their great fans, and the whole city in my heart forever and will follow their results with great interest."
On 18 July 2012, Kagawa was handed a two-minute appearance to mark his Manchester United debut in Durban, South Africa, against AmaZulu in a pre-season friendly match. Kagawa made his first start for the Red Devils against Ajax Cape Town on 21 July 2012, and scored his first goal against Shanghai Shenhua four days later. He made his Premier League debut on 20 August 2012, playing the full 90 minutes of United's 1–0 defeat away to Everton. He scored his first goal against Fulham on 25 August in his home debut for the club. After Tom Cleverley's shot was parried by Fulham goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer, Kagawa scored on the rebound from close range. On 19 September, Kagawa was given his first Champions League start as United played against Galatasaray. He provided an assist for the winning goal scored by Michael Carrick in a 1–0 win. On 23 October, he set up Javier Hernández for United's first goal in an eventual 3–2 Champions League victory against Braga. In that match, however, he twisted his knee, which left him sidelined for two months. Kagawa returned from injury in January 2013.
On 2 March 2013, Kagawa scored his first hat-trick for United and also became the first Asian player to score a hat-trick in the Premier League, in his team's 4–0 home win against Norwich City. On 22 April, Kagawa played a part in the title-winning match against Aston Villa in which United won 3–0; he became the first Japanese player to win a Premier League title. On 12 May, Kagawa was included in the United squad to play against Swansea City in Alex Ferguson's last home game before retirement, which United won 2–1. On the same day, Kagawa received his Premier League medal and was voted Man of the Match. On 19 May, Kagawa played in a 5–5 thriller against West Bromwich Albion, scoring United's first goal with a header.
In 2008, he was also selected to play as a member of the Japanese team for the 2008 Summer Olympics. On 24 May 2008, he made his senior international debut in a friendly Kirin Cup match. Japan won the match against Côte d'Ivoire 1–0. He was not selected in Takeshi Okada's final 23 squad for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. In September 2010 he scored the only goal of the game in Japan's win over Paraguay in Yokohama. It took Kagawa five months to rehab his injury from the AFC Asia Cup. He returned in Dortmund's final game as a substitute in the 87th minute. He was named in the 23 man squad for the 2013 Confederation Cup and scored the second goal for his country during the group stage match against Italy which ended in a 4–3 loss.
2011 AFC Asian Cup
He was included in the 2011 AFC Asian Cup by coach Alberto Zaccheroni. In the quarterfinals against Qatar, he scored two goals. The game ended 3–2, a win for Japan. In the semi-final against South Korea, Kagawa broke his metatarsal bone and missed the final where Japan beat Australia after extra-time.
Style of play
A technically and creatively gifted player Kagawa is a versatile attacking midfielder who is best as an attacking central midfielder where he can distribute the play and fashion chances for others whilst still arriving in the box to score goals. He can additionally play on either the left or right flank. Kagawa has fantastic composure on the ball and with superb decision-making. He has a good selection of passes and seems to always pick the more sensible pass. He is an agile player who likes to dance around defenders and pick out the impossible pockets of space in the final third. He is said to be an offensive midfielder with one of the best noses for goal. who is able to play simple passes, long passes, creative passes and through balls making it look very easy in the process. He has the ability to draw opposing players out of position with his unpredictable runs and sharp movement. On some occasions for the national team, he has played in a left midfield, or in an attacking midfield role.
|Club||Season||League||Cup||League Cup||Continental||Other[nb 1]||Total|
|Japan national team|
- Borussia Dortmund
- Manchester United
- J. League Division 2 Top scorer: 2009
- kicker's Bundesliga Team of the Season: 2010–11, 2011–12
- European Sports Media's European Team of the Season: 2011–12
- Asian International Footballer of the Year: 2012
- "National Team Squad". jfa.or.jp. Japan Football Association. Retrieved 15 January 2014.
- AFC and FIFA only.
- Duerden, John. "Kagawa may open new horizons for Man United on and off the field". Sports Illustrated.
- "Shinji Kagawa was named AFC International Player of the Year Award". indiatimes.com. 29 November 2012. Retrieved 30 November 2012.
- "Shinji Kagawa Profile" (in Japanese). KagawaShinji.com. Retrieved 5 June 2012.
- "Shinji Kagawa – Player's History" (in Japanese). J-League Pro-Footballers Association. Retrieved 13 May 2010.
- Jack Bell (13 November 2010). "Japanese Whirlwind Kagawa Propelling Borussia Dortmund in Bundesliga". New York Times. Retrieved 5 November 2011.
- Hesse, Uli (12 October 2010). "Kagawa provides reminder of Eastern promise". ESPN Soccernet. Retrieved 10 November 2011.
- "Ballack injured as 10-man Hanover hold Bayer". Bangkok Post. 11 September 2010. Retrieved 11 September 2010.
- "Schalke 1–3 Borussia Dortmund: Prophetic Kagawa At The Double For BVB". Goal.com. 19 September 2010. Retrieved 7 June 2011.
- "Dortmund celebrate Bundesliga championship". dw-world.de. 14 May 2011. Retrieved 20 February 2012.
- "Hannover 96 2–1 Borussia Dortmund". ESPN Soccernet. 18 September 2011. Retrieved 20 February 2012.
- "Borussia Dortmund 5–0 Koln: Five-star champions move second in Bundesliga table". goal.com. 22 October 2011. Retrieved 20 February 2012.
- "Borussia Dortmund v Werder Bremen". ESPN Soccernet. 17 March 2012. Retrieved 13 May 2012.
- "FC Cologne v Borussia Dortmund". ESPN Soccernet. 25 March 2012. Retrieved 13 May 2012.
- "Reds agree Kagawa transfer". ManUtd.com (Manchester United). 5 June 2012. Retrieved 5 June 2012.
- Marshall, Adam (5 June 2012). "Kagawa's career so far". ManUtd.com (Manchester United). Retrieved 5 June 2012.
- "Kagawa seals Reds move". ManUtd.com (Manchester United). 22 June 2012. Retrieved 22 June 2012.
- "New numbers for United trio". ManUtd.com (Manchester United). 3 July 2012. Retrieved 3 July 2012.
- "Shinji Kagawa: "I will carry the club, the city and the fans in my heart forever"".
- "AmaZulu 0–1 Manchester United". BBC Sport. British Broadcasting Corporation. 18 July 2012. Retrieved 25 July 2012.
- "Ajax Cape Town 1–1 Man Utd". BBC. 21 July 2012. Retrieved 22 July 2012.
- Coppack, Nick (25 July 2012). "Shanghai S'hua 0 United 1". ManUtd.com (Manchester United). Retrieved 25 July 2012.
- McNulty, Phil (20 August 2012). "Everton 1–0 Man Utd". BBC Sport (British Broadcasting Corporation). Retrieved 21 August 2012.
- Magowan, Alistair (25 August 2012). "Man Utd 3–2 Fulham". BBC Sport (British Broadcasting Corporation). Retrieved 25 August 2012.
- "Carrick gets United off to winning start". eurosport.yahoo.com. 19 September 2012. Retrieved 27 December 2012.
- "Kagawa's knee injury". Manchester United. 23 October 2012. Retrieved 27 December 2012.
- "Football – Kagawa hat-trick sends Manchester United 15 points clear". Yahoo! Sport. 2 March 2013. Retrieved 2 March 2013.
- "Premier League: Shinji Kagawa hits hat-trick as Manchester United beat Norwich 4–0". SkySports. 2 March 2013. Retrieved 2 March 2013.
- "Shinji Kagawa U-20 2007 World Cup Canada 2007_Shinji Kagawa". ShinjiKagawa.info. Retrieved 5 November 2011.
- "Beijing Olympic Players in Home Nation Domestic Leagues". The Best Eleven. 11 August 2008. Retrieved 5 November 2011.
- "Japan 1–0 Paraguay: Shinji Kagawa Strike Gives Blue Samurai Measure Of Revenge". Goal.com. 4 September 2010. Retrieved 2 0 February 2012.
- "Shinji Kagawa (Japan) 2011 AFC Asian Cup: Players to Watch". FOX Sports. Retrieved 4 October 2013.
- "Japan 3–2 Qatar: Kagawa Double Helps Knock Out Spirited Hosts". Goal.com. 21 January 2011. Retrieved 6 November 2011.
- "Injured Shinji Kagawa could be out for the season". ESPN Soccernet. 26 January 2011. Retrieved 20 February 2012.
- McDonnell, David (1 April 2013). "Shinji Kagawa will shine for Man United, says Dortmund star Roman Weidenfeller". Mirror Online. Retrieved 2 June 2013.
- "Analyzing Shinji Kagawa's Long-Term Role at Manchester United". Bleacher Report. 24 April 2013. Retrieved 2 June 2013.
- "Sir Alex explains Shinji substiution". Manutd.com. 19 April 2013. Retrieved 2 June 2013.
- "Ryan Giggs backs Shinji Kagawa to be Manchester United's Euro star". Indian Times. 27 May 2013. Retrieved 2 June 2013.
- Arrowsmith, Richard (21 May 2013). "Manchester United star Shinji Kagawa is not being properly used complains Jurgen Klopp". Mirror Online. Retrieved 2 June 2013.
- "Are Manchester United wasting Shinji Kagawa?". GiveMeSport. 23 May 2013. Retrieved 2 June 2013.
- "Shinji Kagawa". Soccerway. Retrieved 20 February 2012.
- "Shinji Kagawa > Club matches". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 20 February 2012.
- "Shinji Kagawa-Performance data-transfermarkt.co.uk". transfermarkt.co.uk. Retrieved 18 May 2013k.
- "Player Profile – Shinji Kagawa". premierleague.com. Retrieved 18 May 2013.
- Official website
- Shinji Kagawa – FIFA competition record
- Shinji Kagawa – UEFA competition record
- Shinji Kagawa at National-Football-Teams.com
- Shinji Kagawa career stats at Soccerbase
- ESPN Soccernet Profile