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 By John Duerden

Thai skipper Theerathon chased by Cerezo Osaka in Japan - report

Jason Dasey and PJ Roberts assess Chanathip Songkrasin's move to the J-League and what to expect moving forward.

Thailand captain Theerathon Bunmathan is being chased by Cerezo Osaka, according to reports in Japan and his homeland.

The 27-year-old defender could become the second Thai international to the J.League, following in the footsteps of Chanathip Songkrasin, on loan with Consadole Sapporo.

Nikkei Sports reports that Cerezo could make a move to bring the player in for the 2017 J.League season.

The left-back is one of the biggest names in Southeast Asian football. He first caught Japanese attention by scoring two goals against Gamba Osaka while playing for Buriram United in the 2015 AFC Champions League (ACL).

After leaving Buriram for Muangthong United in 2016, Theerathon has gone from strength to strength, impressing with his performances for the national team during qualification for the 2018 World Cup. He also shone as Muangthong reached the knockout stage of the 2017 ACL.

Theerathon Bunmathan of Thailand
Theerathon Bunmathan has earned senior 47 caps since 2010 and won the 2016 Suzuki Cup with Thailand.

As Japan has an agreement with Thailand, footballers from the country are not classed as foreign players.

Cerezo are currently fourth in the J.League and chasing a first-ever domestic championship.

Theerathon was last in international action on Sept. 5 when Thailand equalised against Australia in Melbourne before falling to a late 2-1 defeat.

He's earned 47 caps since 2010, scoring five goals, and winning the 2013 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games and 2016 AFF Suzuki Cup. 

Asian expert John Duerden is the author of Lions and Tigers: Story of Football in Singapore and Malaysia.Twitter: @JohnnyDuerden.

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