Masaaki Higashiguchi

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Masaaki Higashiguchi
東口 順昭
Masaaki Higashiguchi 20180612 (cropped).jpg
Higashiguchi with Japan in 2018
Personal information
Date of birth (1986-05-12) 12 May 1986 (age 33)
Place of birth Takatsuki, Osaka, Japan
Height 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)[1]
Playing position Goalkeeper
Club information
Current team
Gamba Osaka
Number 1
Youth career
1999–2001 Gamba Osaka
2002–2004 Rakunan High School
2005–2006 Fukui University of Technology
2007–2008 Niigata University of Management
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2009–2013 Albirex Niigata 84 (0)
2014– Gamba Osaka 164 (0)
National team
2015– Japan 8 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 25 January 2019
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 22 March 2019

Masaaki Higashiguchi (東口 順昭, Higashiguchi Masaaki, born 12 May 1986) is a Japanese footballer who currently plays for Gamba Osaka and the Japan national football team as a goalkeeper. He previously played for Albirex Niigata.[2][3]

Club career[edit]

A native of Osaka, Higashiguchi spent time in Gamba Osaka's youth system prior to entering university, first at the Fukui University of Technology and later at the Niigata University of Management where he represented their football team in the 2008 Emperor's Cup.

After graduating from university, Higashiguchi signed his first professional contract with then J1 League outfit Albirex Niigata. He spent 5 seasons with the men from the Japan Sea coast and played a total of 84 league games before returning to Osaka in 2014.

Gamba Osaka had just been promoted back to J1 League following their shock relegation in 2012, when they acquired Higashiguchi to be their new first-choice goalkeeper ahead of the 2014 campaign. Things couldn't have got off to a better start for him at his new club as they went on to lift the J1 League title, the J.League Cup and the Emperor's Cup. The Osaka giants followed that up by winning the 2015 Japanese Super Cup and Emperor's Cup trophies, defeating Urawa Red Diamonds in the final of both competitions, as well as reaching the semi-finals of the AFC Champions League before going down to Guangzhou Evergrande over two legs in the semi finals. Higashiguchi played 55 times in all competitions in 2015 adding to the 50 appearances he made in 2014.

Gamba didn't win any silverware between 2016 and 2018, however, Higashiguchi remained the undisputed first-choice between the sticks; he was an ever present during the 2016 league campaign before missing 1 and 5 league games respectively due to injury in the 2017 and 2018 seasons.[3]

International career[edit]

On 23 July 2015, Japan's coach Vahid Halilhodžić called him up to the national team for the first time ahead of the upcoming 2015 EAFF East Asian Cup.[4] He debuted against China, in the last match of the tournament, a 1-1 draw.

His next international involvement would come in a World Cup qualifier at home to Afghanistan in March 2016. The match would see Higashiguchi keep his first clean sheet for the national team as Japan ran out 5-0 winners. After this is would be another 19 months before his next cap in a 3-3 draw in a friendly match at home to Haiti on 10 October 2017. Two months later he was named in the squad for the 2017 EAFF E-1 Football Championship in his home country. Like 2 years previously, his only involvement was in a match against China which Japan won this time 2-1 to help themselves to the runners-up spot in the tournament behind South Korea.

He was named in Japan's squad for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.,[5] but did not play in any of the team's matches as Eiji Kawashima started all 4 of their games. He did, however, play in a pre-tournament friendly against Paraguay on June 12, the match ending in a 4-2 Japanese victory. He played a further 2 international matches in 2018, the home friendly victories over Costa Rica in October and Uruguay in November.[6]

He was named in the final Japan squad for the 2019 AFC Asian Cup in the United Arab Emirates in January 2019 alongside fellow goalkeepers Shūichi Gonda and Daniel Schmidt, however, like the World Cup 6 months earlier he didn't make any appearances.[7][8]

Career statistics[edit]

Club[edit]

As of 2 December 2018[2][3]
Club performance League Cup League Cup Continental Other1 Total
Club Season League Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Japan League Emperor's Cup League Cup Asia Total
Niigata University of Management 2008 - 1 0 - - - 1 0
Albirex Niigata 2009 J1 0 0 0 0 1 0 - - 1 0
2010 25 0 2 0 5 0 - - 32 0
2011 14 0 0 0 0 0 - - 14 0
2012 24 0 0 0 4 0 - - 28 0
2013 21 0 0 0 0 0 - - 21 0
Total 84 0 2 0 10 0 - - 96 0
Gamba Osaka 2014 J1 34 0 6 0 10 0 - - 50 0
2015 34 0 4 0 1 0 12 0 4 0 55 0
2016 34 0 0 0 1 0 5 0 1 0 41 0
2017 33 0 2 0 0 0 6 0 - 41 0
2018 29 0 0 0 3 0 - - 32 0
2019 0 0 0 0 0 0 - - 0 0
Total 164 0 12 0 15 0 23 0 5 0 219 0
Career total 248 0 15 0 25 0 23 0 5 0 316 0

1 includes J. League Championship and Japanese Super Cup appearances.

International[edit]

As of 6 February 2019[6]
Japan
Year Apps Goals
2015 1 0
2016 1 0
2017 2 0
2018 3 0
Total 7 0

Honors[edit]

Gamba Osaka[3]

Japan

References[edit]

  1. ^ "2018 FIFA World Cup Russia – List of Players" (PDF). FIFA.com. Fédération Internationale de Football Association. 4 June 2018. Retrieved 19 June 2018.
  2. ^ a b "Masaaki Higashiguchi Gamba Osaka Player Profile". Gamba Osaka (in Japanese). Retrieved 11 March 2019.
  3. ^ a b c d "Masaaki Higashiguchi Soccerway Player Statistics". Soccerway.com. Retrieved 21 January 2018.
  4. ^ http://www.jfa.jp/national_team/news/00006836/ EAFF東アジアカップ2015(8/2~9@中国/武漢) SAMURAI BLUE(日本代表)メンバー・スケジュール
  5. ^ "World Cup 2018: All the confirmed squads for this summer's finals in Russia".
  6. ^ a b Japan National Football Team Database(in Japanese)
  7. ^ "Japan announce squad for UAE 2019". AFC. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
  8. ^ "SAMURAI BLUE森保監督、「成長しながら王座奪還を目指す」" (in Japanese). JFA. 13 December 2018. Retrieved 13 December 2018.

External links[edit]