Wenger - Why I have high hopes for Ryo


Arsene Wenger believes Ryo Miyaichi will have a successful career because the winger has "traditional Japanese qualities".

The 20-year-old spent much of the season on loan at Wigan Athletic but his promising spell under Roberto Martinez was cut short in March by an ankle ligament injury.

Ryo is on the road to recovery after surgery and Wenger believes he could succeed where Arsenal's first Japanese Gunner - Junichi Inamoto - did not.

"I have great hopes for Ryo because he has the traditional Japanese qualities," Wenger told Arsenal Player. "Japanese players technically have a very good touch, they are mobile, agile, a bit lightweight but they move well. It's usually a player that has a great attitude towards the team.

"Ryo has a fantastic attitude for sure. He has just come out of rehab after a big knee injury, and the physios have told me they have never known an attitude like it. So he has those qualities, and as well he is tricky, has great pace, and works very hard.

"He has to learn to become mature tactically - shrewd tactically - but all the rest, he has."

Inamoto joined Arsenal in 2001 but made just four appearances before moving to Fulham.

"He has to learn to become mature tactically - shrewd tactically - but all the rest, he has"

"He missed something," recalled Wenger. "He had the basic quality but he missed something in the physical aspect, stamina, to be a box-to-box, up-and-down midfielder in the Premier League.

"Also at that time he lacked a little bit of belief in his qualities, because he was a very good footballer, Inamoto, but he was still in a period when the Japanese players didn't feel they were at the level of the rest of the world.

"Now we have good Japanese players in Europe, but at the moment they have not had a real superstar. They had Honda in Russia for a while, but he was not a complete success.

"Before that they had Nakata in Italy who was a real star in Japan, and he had the charisma and personality, but since then nobody has replaced him."

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