August 3, 2018 / 3:06 AM / 4 months ago

Olympics - Japan's Honda eyeing Tokyo 2020

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - World Cup - Group H - Japan vs Poland - Volgograd Arena, Volgograd, Russia - June 28, 2018 Japan's Keisuke Honda applauds fans after the match REUTERS/Toru Hanai/File Photo

TOKYO (Reuters) - Keisuke Honda played his last match for the Japan national team at last month’s World Cup finals but the former AC Milan midfielder says he wants to add a final flourish to his international career by competing at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

The 32-year-old, who scored 37 times in 98 appearances for his country and is the only Japanese player to score at three World Cups, told Abema TV on Thursday he was not ready to hang up his boots just yet.

“I aspire to play in the Tokyo Olympics in two years, and I’m going to keep playing,” he said.

Countries can call upon three players over the age of 23 for the Olympic tournament.

Honda, who featured for Mexican top flight side Pachuca last season, is yet to decide on his next destination, though he has been linked with a move to Australian team Melbourne Victory.

Honda said during the Internet broadcast he was still in negotiations with an unnamed club.

“I want to do things beyond being a player. I’ve been negotiating with a club that understands what I want to do,” he said.

“We’ve had very positive conversations. It’s a team that has been reported.

“If everything goes smoothly we should be able to announce in a few days.”

Reporting by Jack Tarrant; Editing by Peter Rutherford

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