Sint-Truiden add to their posse of Japanese players
Sint-Truiden have added to their posse of Japanese players by signing Yuta Koike from Ryukei University. Sint-Truiden already had three other Japanese players on their books, but Koike becomes their fourth following in the footsteps of Wataru Endo, Takahiro Sekine, and Takehiro Tomiyasu.
According to the reliable website, Transfermarkt Koike is predominantly a left-back, but can also be deployed on the left wing. It also points out on the website that he was only on loan at the university side, and his parent club in Japan seem to be Kashima Antlers. At this point I believe Sint-Truiden could deploy a full Japanese back four, they’ll need to look into signing a keeper to complete the defensive set.
Sint-Truiden find value for money in Japan
Sint-Truiden is not the biggest club in Belgium or the world by any means, which means they have to work in markets where they can manage to get value for money in their transfer business. The evidence would suggest that they have decided to cast their net over East Asia, and specifically Japan in order to get good players for a reasonable transfer outlay.
Japanese players are known to be hardworking, efficient and very fit. Wenger specifically said that he loved working with Japanese players because they will follow instructions well and run all day long. Japanese players are also extremely technical too, so have minimal problems If any adjusting to the European league’s style of play. Problems could arise but it’s more likely from culture issues of moving to Europe than anything to do with playing style.
Sint-Truiden are right to look further afield for potential transfers because they get more bang for their buck, and by looking to Japan not only do they get quality players, but they’re likely getting players who are hardworking, technical and unlikely to cause any problems or issues through ill-discipline, therefore Sint-Truiden are currently employing a win-win transfer policy.