Hiroshi Nanami looks to be the 3rd Verdy acquisition this week. The Osaka version of Nikkan Sports http://osaka.nikkansports.com/soccer/jleague/p-oj-tp0-20061228-135966.html is reporting that Nanami has made up his mind and decided to join Verdy for the upcoming campaign. Nanami was a bright spot for Cerezo Osaka last year after joining the squad in a mid-year loan from Jubilo Iwata. The former National Team member, 4 time best 11, and Asia Cup MVP has a pedigree that rivals anyone in J League. Last year was a bit of a downturn, notching 2 goals and 5 assists in 23 league games. The only details left are whether it will be a straight acquisition or time limit transfer with Jubilo.
Sponichi Annex mentioned the acquisition of Yukio Tsuchiya as well in their article on Nanami. http://www.sponichi.co.jp/soccer/news/2006/12/28/06.html Again, maybe it's just me but I'm not seeing the sense of the move for either Verdy or Tsuchiya. The other two were out of first team action in J1 and were looking for opportunities to keep playing, Tsuchiya is firmly entrenched in the center mid spot (Unless New coach Robert Verbeek has two Dutch upgrades in mind).
Anyhow......Hattori and Nanami are as good as done. Tsuchiya, I can't say, and Hulk and Tsuzuki won't be sorted out until after Emperors Cup.
AROUND THE LEAGUE
Cerezo is definetely this years version of Verdy. Super striker Okubo is being solicited again by European squads for his services after returning from Spain last year. Meanwhile, strike partner Akinori Nishizawa has Urawa pursuing the former national team strikers services.
Seems like after the Yokohama FC miracle season, the new thing in vogue is to acquire former national teamers for leadership purposes ala Shoji Jo, Kazu, and Motohiro Yamaguchi......case in point-
Yutaka Akita got picked up by Kyoto Purple Sanga after his release from Nagoya Grampus 8.
Shonan Bellmare is going after lifelong Shimizu S Pulse defender Toshihide Saito
More on J2 when I compile the rest of the transactions.