Stuttgart’s Gotoku Sakai joins Hamburg

Berlin, July 7 (IANS) Japan international Gotoku Sakai has joined Hamburg from Stuttgart, both the clubs said.

The 24-year-old defender left the “Swabians” after three and a half years to reinforce Hamburg’s defence for the upcoming campaign, reported Xinhua news agency.

Both the clubs are silent about further contract details. The announcement was made on Monday.

The Japan international scored one goal in 87 appearances for Stuttgart. Sakai is part of the Japanese national squad since 2011. He made overall 23 caps for the “Samurai Blue”.

“Coach Labbadia was one of the main reasons for my transfer. I know what he wants and he knows what I can,” said the new arrival.

Head coach Bruno Labbadia, who has already coached Sakai at Stuttgart, said: “He has a great mentality and build up play. The outstanding thing about him is the fact that he is strong with both foot.”

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