Takuma Asano is carrying his pre-season form into the competitive matches for Hannover 96, scoring and winning a penalty in his first serious game for the club.
Asano has been impressing with the German side so far, and managed six goals and one assist in seven matches during pre-season. He scored twice and assisted one on his debut against Ramlingen-Ehlershausen, then scored against Wacker Nordhausen, Wolfsberger, Udinese and Athletic Bilbao.
The question was always going to be whether he could keep that up when it really mattered, and the early signs look good. Playing against Karlsruher SC in the German Cup, Asano won a first half penalty for Niclas Fullkrug to convert.
Then he added a goal of his own in the second period, which you can watch below:
It was an impressive finish, particularly given the pressure the defender was putting him under. Playing a more central role with Hannover, Asano is thriving, and in one game he’s directly contributed to as many goals as he did in his very limited appearances for Stuttgart last season.
Next up are the Bundesliga matches, and they’ll provide a real test for the Arsenal loanee, particularly as Hannover have to play Borussia Dortmund and RB Leipzig in their first three fixtures. If Asano can get anything out of those games, he could be set for a really good season.