Shunsuke Nakamura, born June 24, 1978) is a Japanese
international football (soccer) player. He currently plays for
Celtic of the Scottish Premier League and was voted "most
valuable player" at the Asian Cup 2004. His first season at
Celtic has been relatively successful so far, as he has helped
them to climb to the top of the Scottish Premier League. His
contributions to the Japanese football team include 15 goals,
but most importantly his great vision and touch have produced
many opportunities for his teammates to score as well.
He is best known for near-perfect long passes and is often
described as a dead-ball specialist. He usually plays a
commanding midfield role, just behind the main strikers.
Nevertheless, Nakamura, who is 5ft 10", is criticized for lack
of strength on the ball. Despite his weakness, these physical
limitations are an acceptable compromise when they considering
his contributions in creating opportunities for teammates out of
midfield. His ability to unlock even the tightest defences and
-- above all -- his deadly performance on set plays, make him a
valuable member of any team.
His former clubs include Yokohama F. Marinos and Reggina, for
whom he scored 37 and 11 goals respectively before moving to
Celtic on 25 July 2005 for a fee of around 2.5 million pounds.
A song has been written about him, Fantasista!, by Christian "Ace"
Codenotti, for a soccer-themed Eurobeat/Eurodance album released