In-focus: Shinji Kagawa

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Japanese international Shinji Kagawa appears to have plenty of options available.

The 23-year-old attacking midfielder, linked with a move to either Manchester United or Chelsea, is yet to sign a new deal with Borussia Dortmund and has a contract expiring next summer.

"We would love to extend to his contract, but the ball is in his court," sporting director Michael Zork told Bild.

But, with value both on-and-off the pitch, it’s no surprise that Kagawa is a wanted man. GiveMeFootball look at the positives and negatives of a move for the player…


After spending four years in his homeland Cerezo Osaka, Kagawa instantly delivered on his arrival in Europe, helping Dortmund to the Bundesliga title in his first season with the club.

Despite missing the second half of his debut season in Germany through injury, the diminutive playmaker showed a keen eye for goal in the division, hitting 10 goals in 23 appearances before the turn of the year.

This season, he’s added 13 goals in 33 matches, and was also one of the club’s top performers in the Champions League before their early exit in the competition.

Without possessing any outstanding individual traits, Kagawa is solid in all aspects, with good speed on-and-off the ball, as well as an eye for a key pass. Well disciplined, he often provides the creative spark for BVB.

Off the pitch, Kagawa would also add huge market value for any Premier League team in Asia. As a 29-cap international, Kagawa is adored in his homeland and would sell millions of shirts for any top English side.


Given his injury last season, Kagawa is yet to complete a full season in European club football, suggesting the player remains something of a gamble.

Hi size could also be an area of concern within the English game, as Kagawa is light in the tackle and could be brushed off the ball by tough-tackling defenders.

Despite his goalscoring record, Kagawa can also be wasteful in-front of goal on occasions, and likes to shoot from distance if given the opportunity.

Signed for €350,000 less than two years ago, a club would have to pay substantially more to lure the player away from the Westfalenstadion.


For his financial value in the Asian market alone, Kagawa would represent a shrewd piece of business for any Premier League club.

The fact that he’s a very tidy player would also serve as an advantage for the interested parties, although where he would fit within the United or Chelsea side is up for debate.

That said, if a club can land the player for less than £10 million, then it represents good business in the modern climate.

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