TOKYO, JAPAN - Japan's star midfielder Shunsuke Nakamura will not have to worry about being lost in translation at his new club Espanyol - because he will have no interpreter at his side.
Despite his minimal knowledge of Spanish, the Barcelona club have decided not to assign a translator to the 31-year-old former Celtic playmaker, Japanese sports dailies reported on Wednesday.
"We want him to get accustomed to the environment as soon as possible," Espanyol manager Mauricio Pochettino said, explaining the reason for not hiring an interpreter for Nakamura, according to the Sports Nippon.
Nakamura, whose long-held dream has been a career in La Liga, is known to have tried studying Spanish at his first club, J-League Yokohama Marinos in his hometown, and now he will try to master the tongue under a tutor.
It is the first time that Nakamura will be without a personal interpreter in his past seven years in European football - the first three with Italy's Reggina and the rest with the former Scottish champions Celtic.
Instead, a Japanese strategy analyst in Espanyol's B team will come to his rescue in the event of any linguistic trouble.
Nakamura moved to Espanyol last month when his contract with Celtic expired. He was unveiled before more than 7,000 fans at Espanyol's all-new Cornella-El Prat stadium on Monday, according to the club's website.
"Bon dia," meaning good morning in Catalan, was the first word spoken to the crowd by Nakamura, who has used his rudimentary Italian and English at his former European clubs.
In training, Nakamura was seen communicating in Italian with Espanyol's former international midfielder Ivan de la Pena, who once played for Italy's Lazio.
"He cared about things for me such as where I will have a house. I want to learn Spanish little by little," Nakamura told the Sports Hochi.
An Espanyol official told the daily: "The manager has repeatedly checked Nakamura on DVD and given high marks to his high ability to understand tactics."
"The manager said that there will be no problem at all, even without an interpreter, once he stands on the pitch and kicks the ball."