Keisuke Honda, born in June 13th 1986, is a professional soccer player from Osaka prefecture Settsu city. Up until now he has played in leagues from different countries, starting with the J. League, Dutch League, Russian League, Serie A and others.
He joined a local soccer club and started playing when he was a young boy. He played in Gamba Osaka’s junior youth team and later entered Ishikawa prefecture’s famous sports school Seiryo High School. As a third year student in high school, he led his team as the captain to the semi-finals of the All Japan High School Soccer Tournament, which at that time was a first appearance for Ishikawa prefecture.
In 2005, after graduating from high school he joined Nagoya Grampus and began his career as a professional athlete. In the opening match of the rookie season, he was selected for the starting lineup. Thanks to his assists and good performance, he was often given the chance to appear in matches. His natural physical toughness and determination helped him establish himself as a regular the following year.
In 2008 Honda transferred to the Dutch first division team VVV-Venlo, where he immediately started playing as a regular, but the team relegated to the second division. Still, Honda remained on the team as the main offensive player. He was relied on for his free kicks and as the captain he led the team back to the first division within a year. With his amazing stats of 16 goals and 13 assists, he was selected for the MVP of the year in the second division.
After that in 2010, Keisuke moved to Russia’s famous PFC CSKA Moscow and managed to appear in his long desired UEFA Champions League. With his free kicks and good play, he helped the team advance to their first Champions League quarterfinals.
In 2013 he joined AC Milan and fulfilled his childhood dream when he got his No. 10 jersey. After transferring to the Rossoneri, his first appearance in the Coppa Italia was on the 5th game against Spezia Calcio where he scored a goal and helped the team win. Right after joining the team, his results were tolerable, but because the team fell into a slump for a long period they changed managers often and after the system changed, his opportunities to play were limited. Thus he couldn’t properly show off his skills and after the 2016-2017 season announced that he would be leaving the team.
In the Japan national team, he gained experience by playing in the 2005 FIFA World Youth Championship and the 2008 Beijing Olympics before being invited to join the senior team. Right before the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa he was given a spot as a regular on the team. In the first match against Cameroon he scored the winning goal and on the 3rd match against Denmark he scored with a free kick, plus with his assist to Okazaki he helped lead the team to the Round 16.
Furthermore, in the following year he helped Japan win the AFC Asian Cup and was awarded the MVP award.
In the 2014 World Cup in Brazil he was also the main driving force in the team, appearing in all matches. In the first match against Cote d’Ivoire he took the initiative with the first goal and in the 3rd match he assisted in Shinji Okazaki’s goal, thus showing his value in the team, however the tournament ended for Samurai Blue in the group stages.