Arsenal fans may not be too surprised to hear that we will not be seeing much from one of the transfer additions of last summer yet again next season, because when the announcement was made about the Gunners signing the Japan international forward Takuma Asano it was not exactly met with delight and excitement by the Arsenal faithful.
In fact, even though Asano was just 21-years old and had won the ‘Rookie of the Year’ award in the J-League with Sanfrecce Hiroshima, a lot of us felt that he could well be another Park Chu-Young, the South Korean international star who spent three years on the books with Arsenal but only made a single Premier League appearance.
Park did at least have a work permit to play his football in England though, and he was given the number 9 shirt by Arsene Wenger and some chances to play in the early days, unlike Asano, who Metro reports has yet again been denied a permit and so will continue his loan spell with the German club Stuttgart.
Perhaps this suggests that the path of the Japanese player through his Arsenal career might be more like that of Joel Campbell, who had to wait three years for his own chance to play for his parent club. Asano did impress for Stuttagart last season and helped them gain promotion to the Bundesliga so if he carries on it might not be too long before he gets that permit and a chance to show us what he can do.
Campbell’s time as a Gunner since getting permission to play has not been a roaring success but with 40 appearances to his name over two seasons it is much better than Park’s, so which of the two will Asano follow in the footsteps of?