Naka ready for tough schedule
Espanyol ace Shunsuke Nakamura has insisted he wants to play three Japan games inside a week next month.
By Edwin Chong
Last Updated: 01/10/09 4:06pm
Poor long-distance flier Shunsuke Nakamura has insisted he wants to play three Japan games inside a week next month.
According to reports in the Far East, the 31-year-old is keen to be involved in Japan's Asian Cup qualifier against Hong Kong on 8th October and friendlies with Scotland and Togo.
Having already booked their place in next year's World Cup, Japan host Scotland on 10th October and Togo four days later in the annual Kirin Cup tournament.
The Espanyol midfielder's admission is unwelcome news for his Spanish employers, as they are hoping to minimise the player's international work load given his reputation as a poor long-distance traveller.
However, Nakamura believes all the games are important and is determined to prove his doubters wrong.
"The Hong Kong game is a qualifier so that's the most important, but hopefully we'll have scored a lot of goals by half-time," Nakamura told Sankei Sports.
"Then I can come off and rest so I can be involved in the next two games. (Lionel) Messi comes back from Argentina and he doesn't show fatigue for Barcelona. I have to do the same."