Naohiro Takahara

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Naohiro Takahara
高原 直泰
Takahara Naohiro, Omiya vs Shimizu 2012 (cropped).jpg
Takahara with Shimizu S-Pulse in 2012
Personal information
Full name Naohiro Takahara
Date of birth (1979-06-04) June 4, 1979 (age 40)
Place of birth Mishima, Shizuoka, Japan
Height 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)
Playing position Forward
Club information
Current team
Okinawa SV
Number 10
Youth career
1995–1997 Shimizu Higashi High School
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1998–2002 Júbilo Iwata 105 (58)
2001Boca Juniors (loan) 6 (1)
2002–2006 Hamburg 97 (13)
2006–2008 Eintracht Frankfurt 38 (12)
2008–2010 Urawa Reds 63 (10)
2010Suwon Samsung Bluewings (loan) 12 (4)
2011–2012 Shimizu S-Pulse 46 (9)
2013–2014 Tokyo Verdy 41 (11)
2014–2015 SC Sagamihara 54 (11)
2016– Okinawa SV
Total 462 (129)
National team
1995 Japan U-17 3 (1)
1998–1999 Japan U-20 16 (16)
1998–2000 Japan U-23 11 (4)
2000–2008 Japan 57 (23)
Teams managed
2016– Okinawa SV
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of December 31, 2015

Naohiro Takahara (高原 直泰, Takahara Naohiro, born June 4, 1979) is a Japanese football player and manager. He played for Japan national team. Currently, he is player-manager for Okinawa SV.

Club career[edit]

Takahara was born in Mishima in June 4, 1979. After graduating from high school, he joined Júbilo Iwata in 1998. In 1998, the club won J.League Cup and he was selected New Hero awards. In 1999, the club won J1 League and Asian Club Championship. The club also won the 2nd place 1999–00 and 2000–01 Asian Club Championship. In August 2001, he moved to Boca Juniors on loan.

In 2002, he returned to Júbilo Iwata. The club went on to win the J1 League, while Takahara became the top scorer and was elected Most Valuable Player of the year. End of 2002 season, he moved to Hamburger SV. On December 3, 2006, he scored his first hat-trick in the German Bundesliga in a league game against Alemannia Aachen.

In January 2008 he moved to Urawa Reds for a transfer fee of around ¥180 million (around $1.7 million).[1] Due to a disagreement with the style of coach Volker Finke, who had taken over as coach of Urawa in 2009, Takahara was leased to Suwon Samsung Bluewings of the South Korean K League 1 in July of the following year. On July 31, 2010, he made his debut as a substitute for the 39th minute of the match against Gwangju FC. On 29 August, he scored a goal in the 39th minute of the second half of the game against FC Seoul. He helped victorious game 4-2 and won the MVP in this game.

In 2011, he returned to Japan and signed with Shimizu S-Pulse. After that, he played for J2 League club Tokyo Verdy (2013–14) and J3 League club SC Sagamihara (2014–15). In December 2015, along with legendary Japanese judoka Tadahiro Nomura, Takahara founded Okinawa SV.[2] He served as president as well as playing manager for the club.

International career[edit]

In August 1995, Takahara was selected Japan U-17 national team for 1995 U-17 World Championship. He played all 3 matches and scored 1 goal. In April 1999, he was also selected Japan U-20 national team for 1999 World Youth Championship. He played all 7 matches and scored 3 goals. Japan won the 2nd place. In February 2000, he was selected Japan national team for 2000 Asian Cup qualification. At this qualification, on February 13, he debuted against Singapore. He played all 3 matches and 3 goals and Japan won the qualify for 2000 Asian Cup.

In September, he was selected Japan U-23 national team for 2000 Summer Olympics. He played all 4 matches and scored 3 goals in first match and quarterfinal. In October, he played at 2000 Asian Cup. He played 5 matches and scored 5 goals. Japan won the champions. However he missed the 2002 World Cup, co-hosted by his home country and South Korea, because of lung disease (venous thrombosis).[3]

After 2002 World Cup, Takahara played at 2003 Confederations Cup. Although his convocation for Japan decreased due to the schedule, he played as regular player when he was elected Japan. In 2006, he was elected Japan for 2006 World Cup and he played all 3 matches. After 2006 World Cup, he played at 2007 Asian Cup. He played 6 matches and scored 4 goals, and became a top scorer. He played 57 games and scored 23 goals for Japan until 2008.[4]

Facts[edit]

  • His goals and performances were celebrated by Eintracht supporters by singing to the melody of Gala's Freed from desire. After successful matches Takahara often joined the faithful to jump up and down the same way.
  • Takahara was the first Japanese player to play in the Argentine First Division league.[5]
  • Takahara is the third Japanese to play in Bundesliga after Yasuhiko Okudera and Kazuo Ozaki.

2007 Asian Cup[edit]

Takahara finished top scorer after an impressive performance at the 2007 Asian Cup. He scored against Qatar in the first match, who Japan tied 1-1. Japan won the next match, against United Arab Emirates and Takahara impressed coach Ivica Osim with two goals. In the quarterfinal match against rivals Australia, Takahara scored the tying goal and sent the game to penalty kicks. Although Takahara missed his spot-kick, heroic saves from goalkeeper Yoshikatsu Kawaguchi sent Japan through into the semifinals, where they lost to Saudi Arabia 2-3.

Career statistics[edit]

Club[edit]

As of end of 2015 season[6]
Club season League Cup League Cup Continantal Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Júbilo Iwata 1998 20 5 2 0 6 4 28 9
1999 21 9 3 1 1 0 25 10
2000 24 10 0 0 2 0 26 10
2001 13 8 0 0 2 2 15 10
Total 78 32 5 1 11 6 94 39
Boca Juniors 2001/02 6 1 1 0 7 1
Total 6 1 1 0 7 1
Júbilo Iwata 2002 27 26 3 0 0 0 30 26
Total 27 26 3 0 0 0 30 26
Hamburger SV 2002/03 16 3 16 3
2003/04 29 2 3 1 3 1 2 0 37 4
2004/05 31 7 1 0 *1 0 33 7
2005/06 21 1 2 1 *10 0 33 2
Total 97 13 6 2 3 1 13 0 119 16
Eintracht Frankfurt 2006/07 30 11 4 4 5 2 39 17
2007/08 8 1 2 0 10 1
Total 38 12 6 4 5 2 49 18
Urawa Reds 2008 27 6 1 0 3 1 4 1 35 8
2009 32 4 0 0 8 2 40 6
2010 4 0 0 0 1 1 5 1
Total 63 10 1 0 12 4 4 1 80 15
Suwon Samsung Bluewings 2010 12 4 1 0 1 0 14 4
Total 12 4 1 0 1 0 14 4
Shimizu S-Pulse 2011 28 8 1 0 4 1 25 9
2012 18 1 0 0 2 0 20 1
Total 46 9 1 0 6 1 53 10
Tokyo Verdy 2013 41 11 0 0 41 11
2014 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total 41 11 0 0 41 11
SC Sagamihara 2014 21 5 0 0 21 5
2015 33 6 0 0 33 6
Total 54 11 0 0 54 11
Career total 462 129 23 7 32 12 24 3 541 151

* Includes Intertoto Cup

International[edit]

Source:[4]

Honors and awards[edit]

Club[edit]

Individual[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ (in German) "Takahara leaves Eintracht" Archived 2011-07-19 at the Wayback Machine, eintracht.de, accessed January 4, 2008.
  2. ^ (in Japanese) "沖縄SV立ち上げの高原は「代表兼監督兼選手」…県3部スタートも将来的なJリーグ入り視野"
  3. ^ "Takahara suffering lung disease again". ESPN. 31 May 2004. Retrieved 26 December 2012.
  4. ^ a b Japan National Football Team Database
  5. ^ "Spreading Their Wings: Japanese Soccer Stars Seek Success Overseas", web-japan.org, accessed October 20, 2011.
  6. ^ Nippon Sports Kikaku Publishing inc./日本スポーツ企画出版社, "J1&J2&J3選手名鑑 2015 (NSK MOOK)", 14 February 2015, Japan, ISBN 978-4905411246 (p. 269 out of 298)

External links[edit]