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Thursday, Feb. 18, 2010

Marinos claim Nakamura interest

Kyodo News

Yokohama F. Marinos official Yoshiaki Shimojo said late Tuesday the J. League side has been contacted by the agent of unsettled Espanyol midfielder Shunsuke Nakamura but added no negotiations have taken place to bring the Japan international back to his former club on a short-term loan move.

Shimojo, who is in charge of team affairs at Yokohama, said: "There have been no concrete talks. If there are any developments we would like to consider them positively but would have to be very cautious as it is a sensitive issue."

Nakamura snubbed Marinos in favor of joining Spanish first-division side Espanyol on a free transfer last summer.

The 31-year-old's decision to turn down the club that launched his career stunned Yokohama fans, and club president Masaharu Saito issued an apology and slapped himself with a 50 percent pay cut for seven months for failing to bring the former Reggina and Celtic playmaker home.

Nakamura has struggled to adapt at Espanyol and has managed only 12 appearances this term, with most of those coming off the bench.

His agent Roberto Tsukuda has reportedly been talking to several J. League clubs about a short-term loan move, but he has yet to receive a formal offer.

"With the World Cup approaching, the most important thing for Nakamura is to play regularly at Espanyol. Unfortunately, this is not happening," Tsukuda was quoted as saying. "If he is not getting playing time, he will be moving on."

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