sport news Brighton star Kaoru Mitoma is a master in art of dribbling… he will ... trends now
Very few players could torment a full back and then write a detailed essay on how he did it. But Brighton’s Kaoru Mitoma could, because the Japan international is a former student of the University of Tsukuba where he wrote his thesis on the art of dribbling.
Mitoma continued his surge as one of English football’s newest stars on Saturday, with Brighton’s £2.5million signing — yes, £2.5m, they have done it again — scoring for the third successive outing.
Brighton signed Mitoma from Kawasaki Frontale. The story goes he initially put off joining the Japanese side feeling he was not ready to be a footballer. Instead, he opted to study physical education in Tsukuba.
With a GoPro camera fixed to his head while running with the ball, he researched how his opponent reacted. How a shimmy could earn him space. How a change of speed could deceive. How to beat his man, essentially.
Perhaps it should come as no surprise that a player with a degree in dribbling is now ripping through the Premier League, Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold being one of his recent victims.
Kaoru Mitoma continued his surge as one of English football’s newest stars on Saturday
Mitoma scored with a looping header in the dying minutes to earn victory for the hosts
Yet after taking that brave decision to defer his entry into professional football, 25-year-old Mitoma is now putting all that he learned into practice, as shown at the Amex Stadium on Saturday.
There was one moment during this match that Mitoma was up against Adam Smith. Bournemouth’s right back did not know which way to go and so simply sunk to his knees inside the box, as if surrendering. Mitoma skipped around him and came close to creating the opening goal.
When Brighton’s winner finally arrived in the 87th minute, it was not the result of a mazy run that defeated Bournemouth but rather a looping header. Not his forte, heading, but Mitoma took a chance, made the run, met the cross, and reaped the rewards.
He now has five goals in seven games and is doing it all with an infectious smile that suggests he is embracing every minute.
As is always the case, he will inevitably