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Meet the world’s oldest footballer, ‘King Kazu’

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Safiu Kehinde

When speaking of old football players in the world, our minds quickly go to the likes of AC Milan’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Parma’s Gianluigi Buffon, Bayern’s Manuel Neuer, Frank Ribery, Cristiano Ronaldo, and others. These players are, however, at least a decade younger than the world’s oldest player who clocks 55 by February this year.

Meet Kazu Miura a.k.a “King Kazu”

Kazu was born on February 26, 1967. He started his professional football career at Santos in 1986, having left Japan for Brazil at the age of 15 in 1982. His first stint as a professional footballer saw him made just two appearances for Santos before being loaned across five different Brazilian clubs within four years.

He, however, made a return to the Santos squad, but could only made 11 appearances with three goals to his name despite successful loan spells that saw him bagged 80 appearances in total — though his goal scoring form was not too impressive.

Spending just a season at his second return to Santos, Kazu was shipped back to his country, Japan, in 1990. His eight-year stint with Verdy Kawasaki was one of the remarkable years in his career. Aside scoring 100 goals for the Japanese club, he also enjoyed a season loan at Genoa, making him the first Japanese to play in Italy. Across his 21 appearances for Genoa, he only scored once which came during Genoa’s derby against Sampdoria.

Despite his seemingly goal drought outside the shore of Japan, Kazu continued his quest as he made another short stint at Dinamo Zagreb, Croatia. Barely making 12 appearances for the club, he attempted trial at Leicester City before returning to Japan for the second time.

Since his return to Japan, Kazu has made some stellar performances for Kyoto Purple Sanga, Vissel Kobe, and Yokohama FC where is currently plying his trade- though he had another loan spell at Sydney FC, Austrian league.

Yokohama FC recently shipped him on loan to Suzuka Point Getters where he is likely to debut in February after clocking 55 years of age.

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