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Friday, Dec. 2, 2011

Lopes to replace Nishino at Gamba


OSAKA — Former Japan striker Wagner Lopes is set to take the reins from Akira Nishino, who is stepping down as Gamba Osaka manager at the end of the season, team sources said Thursday.

The 42-year-old Brazilian has apparently already reached a broad agreement on terms with the J. League first-division club.

Lopes joined Nissan Motors (now Yokohama F. Marinos) in 1987 and obtained Japanese citizenship in 1997 before appearing in the World Cup in France a year later.

Since retiring in 2002, Lopes has been managing in Brazil. The Gamba position will be his first managerial job in Japan.

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