Tokyo (AFP) – Japan midfielder Gaku Shibasaki has signed for Spanish second division side Tenerife after his move to La Liga’s Las Palmas collapsed, local media said on Wednesday.
The 24-year-old, who announced himself on the international stage with two goals for Kashima Antlers in a losing effort against Real Madrid in December’s Club World Cup final, had been hoping to move to Spain’s top tier.
But instead of returning to the Japanese champions, Shibasaki opted to join Tenerife — currently sixth in the second division — in a five-month deal until the end of June, according to reports.
“I hope to be able to make a real contribution to the team,” he told media and fans.
“I like to be involved in scoring and making goals so hopefully I can make a positive impact.”
Shibasaki has scored three goals in 13 games for Japan but his stock soared after scoring twice against Spanish giants Real, who fought back to win 4-2 thanks to a Cristiano Ronaldo hat-trick in Yokohama.
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