January 18, 2013 - North American Soccer League (NASL) - Tampa Bay Rowdies
TAMPA, Fla. (January 18, 2013) -- The Rowdies have resigned all-star defender Takuya Yamada, the longest tenured Rowdies player. The Japanese native signed a one-year contract for the 2013 season in search of defending the NASL Soccer bowl Trophy.
Yamada has played with the Rowdies since the inaugural 2010 season, being named in the 2012 NASL Best XI after leading the league in the regular season with 2,520 minutes played. Starting in all 28 regular season matches and two post-season matches in 2012, Yamada showed both his offensive and defensive talents. He was named NASL Defensive Player of the week on September 10, and proved to be a crucial part of the 2012 championship team.
Prior to joining the Rowdies, the iconic Japanese player known as one of the best utility players produced by his country, played at Sagan Tosu in the Japan Professional Football League during the 2009 season where he had 43 appearances and six goals.
Takuya began his professional soccer career in the J. League with Tokyo Verdy (formerly Verdy Kawasaki) in 1997 making 235 appearances scoring 22 goals over eight years. He served as team captain for three years and helped lead Tokyo Verdy to win the 2005 J. League Xerox Super Cup against Yokohama F. Marinos in penalty kicks and the 2004 J. League Emperor's Cup against Jubilo Iwata. His excelent performance earned him four caps for the Japanese national team from 2003 to 2004.
At the moment, the Rowdies updated roster for the 2013 season is as follows:
Goalkeeper: Andrew Fontein;
Defenders: Frankie Sanfilippo (Captain), Takuya Yamada, Jay Needham, Andres Arango, Daniel Scott, Draymond Washington;
Midfields: Stuart Campbell, Luke Mulholland, Keith Savage, Shane Hill, Raphael Cox, Evans Frimpong;
Forwards: Mike Ambersley, Carl Cort