9 August 2018

Kenya: Harambee Stars Striker Linked With Move to Japan

Michael Olunga could be set for a move to J-League side Kashiwa Reysol, Japanese media reported on Wednesday.

Futbol Japones reported the Ghuizou Zhicheng forward, who's averaged a goal in each match he turns out for Harambee Stars, could be set for a permanent move from China.

"Michael Olunga (transferred last season to Girona by Guizhou) could sign with Kashiwa Reysol," the report stated.

Olunga was unavailable for comment by press time but close sources have told Nation Sport he was spotted at the Japan Embassy in Nairobi last week, presumably to process his travel Visa.

If the transfer goes through, the 24-year-old left footed forward will join big name stars namely Andreas Iniesta, Lukas Podolski and Fernando Torres, who have moved to Japan from Barcelona, Galatasaray and Atletico Madrid in Europe respectively.

Olunga, who made his name at Gor Mahia in 2015, has been on the fringes of the Zhicheng first team which he joined in a record Sh450 million deal from Sweden top flight side IF Djurgardens in 2016.

Despite scoring consistently while on national team duty, Olunga has not been part of coach Dan Petrescu's plans in the past year.

In that period he was not registered as part of the first team squad for domestic assignments which forced him to secure a loan deal to Spain top flight Girona during the 2017/2018 league season. He was recently linked with moves to English sides Huddersfield and Hull City.

The Hitachi-based Kashiwa finished fourth on the 18-team Japan's top flight league and the team's management led by coach Takahiro Shimotaira will be hoping the Kenyan's arrival will fire them to third title in the club's 78-year history.

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