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Our Boys in France
Oh, goody! I am happy to learn that both Koji Nakata and Daisuke Matsui now have upped their own official websites. I was hoping they would come around and do this. Since they are now abroad, it is difficult to get any direct information about/from them. There are a number of J.League players who also have their own official website, but all the nine Euro-based players now have one (see right side column list of some player websites).

Koji Nakata (France Ligue 1, Marseille): first message is up! He writes that he was sorry to have caused so much trouble during his transfer process, and thankful for the warm wishes. He felt that this website would help the process of getting his thoughts and feeling across to supporters without the middleman. (rough summary/translation)

Daisuke Matsui (France Ligue2, Le Mans): not much is up yet, just basic info. Both Koji and Daisuke belong to the same management company, so it looks like they've decided to launch websites for these two at the same time. Both websites have the same design, and I hope they jazz it up a little later on when they have more content.

The main feature of these websites is of course their periodic messages to fans. Some players keep it pretty dull (sorry, Takahara!) and basic (let's please stop talking about the weather!). Some try to keep things very upbeat and cute (like Ono, whose Jack Russell Chocolat should have his own agent by now). Some incorporate various aspects of their lives (like Hide Nakata), and some concentrate on a brief analysis of recent games (like Nakamura).

Of any Japanese players, I have to say that Miyamoto's (Gamba, JLeague) website is the most thorough. Not surprising considering his personality, he ups a new message like clockwork every 7-8 days, while most other players are pretty bad about updating. He also has a pretty neat photo collection. Hayuma Tanaka (Marinos) is also very good about writing, and his messages are very personable and appealing. [japan football soccer national j-league]
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