Veteran striker Fernando Torres accepts offer to join Sagan Tosu


My new team will be Sagan Tosu.

The World Cup victor had been linked with moves to the A-League and MLS but - like Iniesta at Vissel Kobe - the next stage of his career will be in Japan.

The first-division team announced that the 34-year-old, who had stints in the English Premier League with Liverpool and Chelsea, will wear the No. 9 jersey for Tosu, now 17th in the 18-team J. League standings.

The move comes after Torres made a decision to join J-League strugglers Sagan Tosu instead of coming Down Under, with Sydney FC and Melbourne Victory keen to sign the former Atletico Madrid hitman.

"Although the signing is not closed, we had prepared a draft due to its likelihood", read a statement. They were one of the first clubs to show interest in me, and I appreciate their insistence and how they convinced me with their sporting, personal and cultural project.

"We have had offers from every continent".

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"I think that Japan and the Japanese league is going to be a great experience".

He said he planned to make his debut for Sagan Tosu on July 22.

"I wanted a new challenge in a completely different place".

Torres becomes the second high-profile Spaniard to head to Japan in the last few weeks after former Barcelona great Andres Iniesta agreed to join Vissel Kobe in May.

The move was also announced on Sagan Tosu's official website, with the club saying he would be given the No. 9 shirt, which he has worn for the majority of his career.

Torres, who won the 2010 World Cup and the 2008 and 2010 European Championships with Spain, scored 38 goals in 110 appearances for his country and struck 118 times in two spells at Atletico.

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