Mainz - 1. FSV Mainz 05 have announced their first signing of the 2015/16 summer transfer window after snapping up Japanese international forward Yoshinori Muto from FC Tokyo.

The 22-year-old compatriot of Shinji Okazaki has put pen to paper on a four-year contract lasting until 2019 with the Karnevalsverein, despite attracting interest from elsewhere in Europe. 

Muto’s stars on the rise

Muto, who only graduated from Keio University in March after completing an economics degree, has been touted of one of Japan’s rising stars having scored 24 goals in 54 appearances in all competitions during his two-year spell as a professional footballer on the books of FC Tokyo.

Muto was quoted earlier this season saying, “I want to think about it [my future] carefully. Where can I go to develop? A team that suits me, where I can play and develop”, and Mainz, a club renowned for advancing young talent, have presented the 11-time Japan international with a perfect opportunity to do so in one of Europe’s top league. 

‘Certain that he will fit in’

Comfortable playing across any position in a front three, Mainz’s sporting director Christian Heidl is looking forward to welcoming the latest signing to the club. “We’ve been convinced for a long time now that, with the qualities he posses, Yoshinori Muto can provide the reinforcements we’ve been looking for in our attacking wide positions,” explained Heidel on the club’s official website. “We’re delighted that we were able to convince him to join us, especially as he made his decision whilst being very conscientious of his sporting prospects.”

Head coach Martin Schmidt is also of the opinion that the 22-year-old’s ability will greatly benefit Mainz: “We spent a long to watching Yoshinori Muto because we’re certain that he will fit in at Mainz 05 and with our style of play. He’s a quick, agile and technically gifted forward in wide positions, who will bring us added qualities in those positions.”