Kaoru Mitoma has signed a new long-term contract with Brighton. The news has been well-received in the UK, but it’s also gotten a lot of attention in Japan, with a variety of reports.
Brighton announced Mitoma’s contract extension on the club’s official website on July 21 (KST). According to the official website, he will stay with the club until 2027. After the announcement, head coach Roberto De Jervi said, “This is great news. He’s one of our best players,” he said after the announcement.
The news of the re-signing of a key Japanese player was not lost on the Japanese archipelago. “Mitoma, who joined Brighton from Kawasaki Frontale in 2021, made his Premier League debut last season,” said Japanese publication Amoeba Times. He had a good debut season at Brighton, scoring three goals and providing four assists in 11 official games this season. There was talk of him leaving Brighton in the winter, and he was linked with Manchester City and Barcelona.”
Japanese soccer fans were also given the local reaction. “There were rumors of a move to another team in Europe, but he decided to stay at Brighton. Fans cheered, “Mitoma is one of Brighton’s best players,” “He will be worth £100 million when his contract expires in 2027,” and “He should stay at Brighton as long as De Jong is in charge,” the outlet reported.
Mitoma actually joined Brighton from Kawasaki Frontale in 2021. After a year of playing for non-Premier League teams in Europe due to visa issues and a loan spell, Mitoma made his Premier League debut for Brighton.
He started the 2022-23 season in the rotation, but gradually increased his playing time to compete for a starting spot. Energized Brighton’s left wing with his straight but explosive dribbling and intermittent attacking runs
Scored his team’s third goal in Brighton’s win at home against West Ham in Round 26 of the 2022-23 English Premier League season to drive a wedge in the victory, and followed that up with three consecutive attacking points (one goal, two assists) in the eighth round tie against Crystal Palace. He established himself as the perfect first-choice striker for Brighton.
At the time, De Jong said, “He defends well and he plays as a team. He dribbles and shoots for 90 minutes and shakes the opposition. When the team tries to play possession football, he moves from the flanks to the center and gets involved in the numbers game. He’s also an excellent forward passer. One day he will be a force to be reckoned with in the top Premier League.”
Noting Mitoma’s performance in England, ‘Bissaker’ said: “He is a great all-round player. He can play on the wing as well as in the attacking midfield. He will be attractive to Premier League clubs,” he said, predicting that big clubs like Manchester United and Liverpool will take notice.
This season has been no different. He now has three goals and three assists in eight Premier League games. An assist in the opening game against promoted Luton Town was followed by a goal and an assist against Wolverhampton. He rattled the net with a long-range solo run, seemingly possessed by Lionel Messi, the ‘God of Soccer’ at the time. He followed that up with a multi-goal performance against Bournemouth, helping Brighton to a 3-1 win.
The local media even compared Mitoma to Son Heung-min (Tottenham) at one point. BBC pundit Garth Crooks said: “Mitoma has all the makings of a top-class player. He plays very similarly to Son,” analyzing that “he’s not afraid of opponents, he can see the pass, and he wants to score.”
Brighton manager Roberto De Jervi agreed: “Mitoma plays very similarly to Son Heung-min. He’s not afraid of opponents, he can see the pass, and he wants to score goals.” Chester City manager Pep Guardiola also praised Mitoma. “I would say that Mitoma’s impact on the Premier League is huge, last season was special,” Guardiola said.
His meteoric rise has led to transfer speculation. According to Spanish outlet Pichajes, “Manchester City and Manchester United are interested in Brighton winger Mitoma. They could try to sign him this winter transfer window. Both clubs have made Mitoma a key target.”
BBC pundit Crooks was full of praise for Mitoma: “Manchester United have Jadon Sancho and Anthony Martial. I don’t see the quality or ability in Mitoma that I see in Sancho or Anthony. Old Trafford is not an easy stage, but from what I have seen, Mitoma is the right player for Manchester United.”
“Mitoma would be a perfect fit for Manchester United,” said British publication The Sun. He would be far better than the two wingers they have under Eric ten Hagh.”
At the moment, Mitoma’s price tag is high. His value has been increasing due to his performances in the Premier League and rumors of a move to a top team. According to soccer statistics company TransferMarkt, Mitoma’s price tag is estimated at €50 million ($71.6 billion). This is another reason to keep an eye on Mitoma’s future in the Premier League.
As rumors of a move to a big club in the Premier League swirled, teams in the Spanish Primera Liga also took notice. Real Madrid and Barcelona, both in the Spanish league, have been linked with the player.
However, he has stayed at Brighton to continue his challenge. Brighton manager David Weir said: “Mitoma adapted to the Premier League last season and quickly became one of Brighton’s key players. His success reflects the hard work of the department who were instrumental in recruiting him. Mitoma gained important experience and developed into a player who is a big part of Roberto’s team. I have no doubt that the Brighton fans will be delighted to see him re-sign for the club.”
Mitoma is also an integral part of the Japanese national team, forming a partnership with Takefusa Kubo. He did not play in the October A match to preserve his fitness, but he was outstanding on the European tour in September. Beating the German national team on their home turf was a huge achievement.
Japan defeated Germany 4-1 in an international friendly at the Volkswagen Arena in Wolfsburg, Germany. Germany lost to Japan in the group stage of the FIFA 2022 World Cup in Qatar last November. They were looking for revenge on this day, but came up short.
The home team came out with a 4-2-3-1 formation. Kai Havertz was up front, with Florian Wirz in the second line. Serge Gnabry and Leroy Janet supported the flanks. In the midfield, Ilkay Gundogan and Emre Can were chosen. The back four consisted of Niko Schlottback, Antonio Rudiger, Niklas Zuerle, and Jozua Kimmich. The goalkeeper’s gloves were worn by Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
The visitors, Japan, came out with a similar 4-2-3-1. Ayase Ueda started up front, with Kaoru Mitoma, Daichi Kamada, and Junya Ito in the second line. The midfield was guarded by Wataru Endo and Hidemasa Morita. The back four consisted of Hiroki Ito, Yukinari Sugawara, Ko Itakura, and Takehiro Tomiyasu. Keisuke Osako was in goal.
Germany applied strong forward pressure early in the first half and succeeded in stealing the ball from Japan, who were playing the ball out of the back. In front of the goal, Habertz got the ball, but the Japanese were quick to cover and deny Germany the chance.
In the 11th minute, Japan took an unexpected lead. Junya Ito was the hero. He got to a cross from the right before Rudiger. Despite the lack of shooting angle, the ball was exquisitely placed past Thier Stegen. Japan took the lead with the first goal.
The Japanese offense continued. In the 18th minute, Ito Junya once again broke into the German box. She fired a powerful half-volley that was straight at Thier Stegen.
After regrouping, Germany broke down the Japanese defense with a passing play in the 19th minute, and Wirz passed the ball to Zane in the no-mark. With a one-on-one opportunity, Zane found the back of the net with a left-footed ground ball. It was the equalizer that tied the game. 메이저사이트
In the 21st minute, Mitoma’s fantastic dribbling breakthrough shone through, as he neutralized two opposing defenders on the left flank before feeding the striker in the center. However, Germany’s quick defensive cover saved the day.
After conceding the equalizer, Japan continued to attack. In the 22nd minute, Sugawara’s cross from the right flank was met by Ito, but the ball found its way to an unmarked Ueda, who finished to complete the scoring. The German defense’s concentration was lacking.
Germany struggled with Japan’s forward pressure. After losing the ball in the back, Zühle made a late run at Ueda, but was fouled. The referee showed Zühle a yellow card. In the 30th minute, Zane created the decisive chance after breaking down the right flank. After stripping the opposition defense, you sent a grounded cross to Birz in the center. However, Birz’s shot was high and the chance was ruined.
The attack continued, once again utilizing Zane. Two minutes later, a similar opportunity arose, but this time the German striker didn’t get the ball. The Germans claimed a penalty on the play, but it wasn’t awarded.
The German defense continued to be shaky. They were successful in stopping Mitoma’s dribble, but continued to give away the ball in the secondary. In the 41st minute, Germany committed a passing error and Ueda had a quick one-on-one opportunity. However, a super save from Thier Stegen averted the danger.
Meanwhile, the Japanese defense remained focused. A German counter-attack led to a crucial chance, but Japan’s cover play shone through. The first half ended with Japan leading 2-1, and boos rained down on the Volkswagen Arena.
Germany faltered again at the start of the second half. After an uneventful buildup, Thier Stegen took a kick that was intercepted by Junya Ito. Junya Ito immediately attempted a left-footed curling shot, but it went wide of the target. It was a giddy moment for Germany.
Two minutes later, Junya Ito found space in the back and set up Ueda for a crucial chance, but his shot was blocked by Thier Stegen. Morita then took the ensuing rebound, but his shot hit the side netting. Ten minutes later, Mitoma fired a powerful shot from the left, but it was straight at Stegen.
In the 25th minute, Japan counterattacked. Substitute Takuma Asano broke down the left flank and had a one-on-one chance, which was also blocked by Stegen. Mitoma’s subsequent shot was also straight at him.
Germany continued to test the Japanese goal in search of an equalizer, but the chances didn’t come. Japan’s defensive focus continued to shine, neutralizing German attacks.
In the 45th minute, Japan broke through. Robin Gojens lost the ball to Takefusa Kubo, giving him a one-on-one opportunity. Kubo didn’t get greedy and gave way to Asano, who cut in from the side and slotted the ball into the back of the net. Japan made it 3-1. Kubo went on to score the winning goal and shock the world with another World Cup victory over Germany.
However, despite re-signing with Brighton, some fans felt that he could leave the team. Some Japanese fans said, “The length of the contract doesn’t mean much now. Even if he extends his contract, he might leave next season. If Brighton are happy to extend his contract, it means that Mitoma can get a bigger payday when he leaves.”
Some suggested a move to Liverpool. Another fan wrote: “If he wants to win trophies and win the Ballon d’Or, he needs to move to Liverpool. If he wants to win trophies and win the Ballon d’Or, he needs to move to Liverpool.”