Daigo Kobayashi – Whitecaps FC midfielder
– 232 appearances in the J. League
– Won the 2005 Japanese Super Cup and 2004 Emperor’s Cup with Tokyo Verdy
– Won the 2009 Norwegian Tippeligaen league championship with Stabæk Fotball
“We’re really pleased that Daigo is going to be joining us,” said Martin Rennie, Whitecaps FC head coach. “He’s technically very gifted and he’s got an excellent final pass. He can create goals for us and he’s got a lot to prove. Those are the type of players we want in our squad.”
“I’m very happy to come to Vancouver and play for the great fans of this city,” said Kobayashi. “I look forward to giving my all to help this club continue to grow and succeed.”
Prior to his stint with Shimizu, the 5-foot-10, 150-pound midfielder spent 18 months with Greek Football League side Iraklis FC, appearing in 14 matches.
In 2009, Kobayashi played with Stabæk Fotball of the Tippeligaen, the top tier of Norweigan soccer. The native of Fuji, Shizuoka, registered eight goals in 29 matches with Stabæk to help the Norweigan side claim the league championship.
From 2006 to 2008, the Japanese international played three seasons with J. League Division I side Omiya Ardija. In 90 matches with Omiya, Kobayashi registered 14 goals. In 2006, the J. League veteran was teammates with current Whitecaps FC midfielder Jun Marques Davidson.
Prior to joining Omiya, Kobayashi appeared in 104 matches for Tokyo Verdy, helping his team win the Emperor’s Cup in 2004 and Japanese Super Cup in 2005.
Internationally, Kobayashi has made one appearance for the Japanese men’s national team, playing an international friendly against Trinidad and Tobago in 2006. On the youth side, the talented attacker was selected to the Japanese U-18 national team in 2001 and in 2003 led the team to the FIFA World Youth Championship (now the FIFA U-20 World Cup).
Weight: 150 lbs
Born: February 19, 1983, in Fuji, Shizuoka, Japan
Hometown: Fuji, Shizuoka, Japan
Last Club: Shimizu S-Pulse (J. League Division 1)
How Acquired: Acquired by Whitecaps FC as a free agent on January 28, 2013