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Takehiro Tomiyasu is a professional Japanese soccer player who plays in defence for Arsenal in the Premier League.
After progressing up the ranks at Japanese side Avispa Fukuoka, Tomiyasu moved to Belgium to progress his career at Sint-Truidense, before transferring to Italian club Bologna.
However, on the summer transfer deadline day in 2021, the defender signed for Premier League side Arsenal, who added Tomiyasu as cover for their defence.
Home country soccer
Tomiyasu is one of Japan's hottest talents with many believing he has the ability to become a soccer legend. The prospect was discovered in his native and the word quickly spread about his talent.
The defender earned himself a youth academy spot at FC Barcelona at a very young age, but travel issues stopped Tomiyasu from representing them.
In the 2015/16 season, Tomiyasu spent half the season watching his side from the sidelines. However, after making his league debut, the Japanese international became an integral part of his sides makeup.
After a successful start to a promising career, Tomiyasu decided to make a move to Europe.
Europe welcomed Tomiyasu to Belgium first division side Sint-Truidense VV although an ankle injury delayed his awaited debut for the club.
After missing out on the whole season in Belgium, Tomiyasu made his debut during a 2-1 win over Royal Antwerp, recording one minute in the 2017/18 season.
Tomiyasu made 40 appearances in the following 18/19 campaign, aiding his side to a seventh-place finish.
His defensive skills, accompanied by his speed and technical abilities caught the attention of more clubs across Europe as he won Sint-Truidense VV Player of the Year award.
Experience in Bologna
After making a statement in Belgium, Tomiyasu joined Bologna in 2019 for $10.7million and would instantly become a solid member of the backline.
He became the second Japanese soccer player to play in Italy after the great Hidetoshi Nakata. Tomiyasu chose Italy due to its defensive focus, with the chance to adapt his game.
During his league debut, a 1-1 drew against Hellas Verona, he was awarded his first Man of the Match award, which was later followed by Bologna's Player of the Month award for August.
He returned to first-team action after recovering from a Biceps femoris muscle injury and made 30 appearances during his first season in Italy, establishing himself as a key first-team player.
Throughout his 33 appearances in 2020/21, Tomiyasu played centre-back 17 times, right-back 14 times, and left-back twice. He received high praise for his performances on the left and right sides.
The summer transfer window saw clubs such as Tottenham Hotspur and Italian side Atalanta linked with Tomiyasu. However, the defender would transfer to the red side of north London, signing for Arsenal on transfer deadline day.
Tomiyasu has dominated the Japanese international scene ever since his trial with Barcelona. Having played for the Under-14s and Under-15s, he worked his way up through all the age groups, and into the first team.
With Japan Under-18s, he played for his national side in the Panda Cup. Despite Tomiyasu only playing twice, his side won the competition.
Further youth success was to come as the defender was called up to the Japan Under-19s for the AFC U-19 Championship. After scoring in a 3-0 win over Qatar in Japan's second game, Tomiyasu would aid his side reach the final of the competition.
He was further called up to the Under-20s for the U-20 World Cup, as well as the Under-21s for the Toulon Tournament.
In 2019, Tomiyasu made his senior Japan debut in a 3-0 international friendly win against Panama. After his debut, he was awarded the chance to play in the AFC Asian Cup in 2019. Tomiyasu's side reached the final before being beaten by Qatar.
From a young age, Tomiyasu wanted to become a soccer player, idolising Javier Mascherano as a child. Although, the defender has stated that he was close to following his two sisters in swimming instead before switching to soccer.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, he was a member of the players and staff who agreed to give up a month's salary to aid the club's finances. Tomiyasu also donated 1,000 masks to his former club Avispa Fukuoka's academy.
Takehiro Tomiyasu's net worth is believed to be around $1.94million, according to Salary Sport.