After playing his final game for Melbourne Victory in an 3-1 Asian Champions League loss to Sanfrecce Hiroshima, Keisuke Honda’s marquee stay with Melbourne Victory has been questioned by former Socceroo Mark Bosnich.
Victory were expected to perform strongly in the A-League and Asia with Honda in their side but instead struggled in both – picking up just one point from a possible 18 in the ACL.
Honda himself missed a large chunk of games with a hamstring injury and though he did score seven goals and add seven assists from his 20 A-League appearances, Bosnich believes overall the Japanese star’s spell in Australia wasn’t a success.
“I have to say from a football perspective, no,” Bosnich said on Fox Sports.
“I enjoyed it as much as everyone watching him play at his best but obviously that injury, it hurt Melbourne Victory.
“In terms of off the pitch, only the commerical people would be able to say that. It wasn’t a Del Piero-esque type of thing off the pitch.
“Going back to the football…the bar for Victory is to be champions, they were third and they got knocked out in the elimination final.”
While unable to inspire Victory to success on the pitch, departing coach Kevin Muscat is adamant Honda had a significant overall influence.
“Keisuke’s had a huge impact on the football club, his peers, the younger players and myself without a doubt,” Muscat said.
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“Listening to Keisuke’s answers, he’s a winner and his frame of mind is always positive.
“He’s applied himself in the right manner at every opportunity.”
After one season with Victory, Honda will look to continue his club career elsewhere next season but has ruled out a return to the J-League.