Japan defender Daiki Hashioka has joined Luton Town in the English Premier League from Belgian outfit Sint-Truiden for an undisclosed fee, both clubs announced Tuesday.

The 24-year-old, predominantly a right-back, joined Sint-Truiden from Urawa Reds in 2021 and played at the Tokyo Olympics. Hashioka has seven senior caps for Japan but did not make the Samurai Blue squad for the ongoing Asian Cup in Qatar.

Daiki Hashioka. (Getty/Kyodo)

"It's always been a dream of mine to play in the Premier League," Hashioka said in a statement from Luton. "It's physically and technically a top league and very intense, so I know it's going to be difficult but I'll give my all for the team."

"My strengths are heading, one-versus-one situations and I like to do a lot of running. I've only scored twice this season, but I want to score more. I can't wait to celebrate in front of the Luton supporters."

Luton's new No. 27 was unveiled to the home fans during their 4-0 win over Brighton on Tuesday as the promoted side moved out of the relegation zone into 17th place.

"Hashi is a versatile defender who can play anywhere along the backline and, having met him I know he's going to fit into the group really, really well," Luton manager Rob Edwards said.

Hashioka joins the Japanese contingent of Arsenal's Takehiro Tomiyasu, Brighton's Kaoru Mitoma and Liverpool's Wataru Endo in the English top flight.

Japan manager Hajime Moriyasu called up AZ Alkmaar's Yukinari Sugawara and Cerezo Osaka's Seiya Maikuma as his two right-backs for the Asian Cup.

German second-tier club Schalke, meanwhile, said attacker Soichiro Kozuki is joining Polish side Gornik Zabrze on loan. The 23-year-old will become a teammate of Germany's World Cup winner and former Vissel Kobe forward Lukas Podolski at Zabrze.

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