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|Full name||Eiji Kawashima|
|Date of birth||20 March 1983|
|Place of birth||Yono, Saitama, Japan|
|Height||1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)|
|1995–1997||Yononishi Junior High School|
|1998–2000||Urawa Higashi High School|
|2004–2006||Nagoya Grampus Eight||17||(0)|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 23 June 2018 (UTC)|
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 2 July 2018
Kawashima played in Japan for Omiya Ardija, Nagoya Grampus Eight and Kawasaki Frontale before joining Lierse S.K. in Belgium in 2010. He then played for another Belgian club, Standard Liège, from 2012 to 2015, and Dundee United in Scotland from 2015 to 2016. He played for Japan at the 2010, 2014 and 2018 FIFA World Cups.
Kawashima was born in Yono, Saitama, and attended Yononishi Junior High School and Urawa Higashi High School, where he played on their amateur football teams. Although he had excellent grades and was offered enrollment to nearby universities, he decided to become a professional footballer. After trying out for the Urawa Red Diamonds, he was signed instead by Omiya Ardija's general manager Norio Sasaki.
This section needs expansion with: what happened after Parma? Did he return to Omiya?. You can help by adding to it. (May 2013)
In 2004, Kawashima joined Nagoya Grampus in Japan's J. League. He competed with veteran goalkeeper Seigo Narazaki over the position, and served as the alternate, until late 2005, under manager Sef Vergoossen, when Narazaki was injured, and Kawashima started in ten games.
In 2007, Kawasaki Frontale signed Kawashima for a transfer fee of 150 million yen. The move was, at the time, the largest transfer fee for a player in the J. League. He received more playing time and would retain his first team status.[jargon] That season, Kawasaki Frontale became the first Japanese club to qualify for the 2007 AFC Champions League where they finished first in their group stage. In the knockout rounds, Kawashima allowed no regulation goals in the quarterfinals against Iran's Sepahan club, but lost the penalty shoot-out.
After participating in the 2010 FIFA World Cup, Kawashima completed his move to Europe by joining Lierse S.K. in the Belgian Pro League. Kawashima said, "After I experienced the World Cup, I thought that putting myself in a more competitive environment is the only way I can get better."
At Lierse, Kawashima became the starting goalkeeper from the first game of the season. But the team struggled, suffering many lopsided losses and ranking as a leading candidate for relegation. But in the final game of the season against Club Brugge, Kawashima held the opponents scoreless and contributed to the team's successful defense of its first-division status. He was elected the team's Most Valuable Player.
On October 2011, Kawashima was appointed Lierse's team captain. For the 2011–12 season, he played all 30 regular league games and six Europa League Playoff games. He was again voted the team's MVP.
2011 Lierse shouting incident
On 19 August 2011, in a match between Lierse S.K. and Germinal Beerschot, Lierse was leading by a goal when Beerschot fans threw a projectile in the direction of Kawashima and insulted him with chants of "Kawashima-Fukushima!" in reference to the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster. After being confronted by Kawashima, the referee halted the match for several minutes until order was restored. After the match had ended in a 1–1 draw, Kawashima left the pitch in tears, visibly upset at the insults. Kawashima said, "I can pass on many things, but not that. This is not funny. Using the drama of Fukushima in this manner is not at all funny."
Beerschot released a club statement on the incident: "Our fans have crossed a thin line where a bit of fun turns into something serious. The chants aimed at Lierse goalkeeper Kawashima were offensive and completely out of order". However, Beerschot said that Kawashima was partly to blame: "The Lierse shot-stopper also took part in this as he provoked the Beerschot fans with offensive gestures and facial expressions. Our own goalkeeper Stijn Stijnen on the other hand never reacted to abusive chants and insults from the Lierse faithful." Beerschot further emphasized that it is completely unacceptable to assert insults of this nature. The Royal Belgian Football Association (RBFA) fined Beerschot 30,000 Swiss francs (¥2.7 million, or US$34,920) and RBFA officials apologized not only to Kawashima, but also to Atsushi Yokota, the Japanese Ambassador to Belgium, over the incident. In contrast, Lierse protested to the RBFA, that caused the uproar is Beerschot posted an apology in Japanese officials, On 22 September, Beerschot formally apologized to Kawashima.
On 18 July 2012, Kawashima left Lierse to join Standard Liège on a three-year deal. He subsequently left the club when his contract expired to pursue more first team football after losing his place to Yohann Thuram-Ulien.
Scottish Premiership club Dundee United applied for a UK work permit to sign Kawashima in November 2015. The signing was confirmed on 29 December, after the work permit had been approved. He made his debut for the club, against city rivals, Dundee on 2 January 2016, losing 2–1. At the end of the season, he was released following the club's relegation.
Kawashima played five league games during his maiden season in France as served as backup to Thomas Didillon. He also played the full 90 minutes against Lens in the 2016-17 Coupe de France, as the club exited the competition.
Kawashima started the 2017-18 season on the bench, however, once playing, reassured his team with a series of excellent displays. As a result, he would cement himself as the club's No.1 as they fought relegation. His form for Metz would earn him a recall to the Japanese national team, where he has since reclaimed the No.1 jersey.
Kawashima was selected for the 2010 FIFA World Cup squad as the backup to Seigo Narazaki, who had impressed in the qualifiers. In a friendly match on 30 May against England, he was the starting goalkeeper, and produced many saves. He denied Frank Lampard twice, including a penalty kick, and a shot by Wayne Rooney before eventually being beaten by two own goals. He was subsequently selected to play in Japan's first Group E game, Japan vs. Cameroon on 14 June, where Japan recorded its first World Cup win on foreign soil with a score of 1–0. On 19 June Netherlands vs. Japan, he was the starter; he deflected a shot from Wesley Sneijder but it went in his own net as the team lost 0–1. On 24 June Denmark vs. Japan, he allowed one goal by Jon Dahl Tomasson's penalty kick, but the team still won 3–1 and advanced to the round of 16. On 29 June, he allowed no goals against Paraguay but was unable to save a single spot-kick during the penalty shoot-out, which Paraguay won 5–3.
Kawashima participated as Japan's goalkeeper in the 2011 AFC Asian Cup. On 13 January, he was sent off for causing a penalty in the group stage match against Syria, but Japan went on to win the game 2–1. On 26 January Japan vs. Korea semi-finals Kawashima saved two penalty shoot-out shots to enable Japan to advance. On 29 January, Kawashima kept a clean sheet in the Final as Japan won 1–0; he was chosen as Man of the Match. He won his 48th cap for his country in a 2–1 loss against Mexico on 22 June 2013.
In May 2018 he was named in Japan’s preliminary squad for the 2018 World Cup in Russia. When being scored by punching in the game against Senegal, his punch clear was criticized as "A comedy of errors" by Japan correspondent of FIFA.
|Nagoya Grampus Eight||2004||4||0||0||0||8||0||-||-||12||0|
2Includes J. League Cup.
4Includes Belgian Pro League Play-offs.
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