Friday, Feb. 27, 2004
Yokohama F. Marinos and Japan striker Tatsuhiko Kubo on Thursday was named 2003 Footballer of the Year in a poll of Japanese soccer writers.
Kubo took the honor for the first time after receiving 77 of the 248 votes cast nationwide, with club and national teammate Yuji Nakazawa runnerup with 43 and Urawa Reds' Brazilian striker and 2003 J. League Player of the Year Emerson in third with 33.
Kubo scored 16 times in 25 league appearances last season, including a memorable stoppage time goal in the 2-1 win over Jubilo Iwata that sealed a J. League two-stage triumph for Yokohama on the final day of the second stage.