Timbers sign Japanese defender Takuro Nishimura

PORTLAND, Ore. – The Portland Timbers today announced the club has signed Japanese defender Takuro Nishimura for the 2009 season pending league and USSF approval. Nishimura has been on trial with the club since the start of preseason training camp.

A native of Tokyo, Japan, Nishimura, 31, joins the Timbers after playing the previous seven seasons in Japan’s J-League with the Urawa Red Diamonds (2001-04) and Omiya Ardija (2004-08). In 2004, he helped Urawa to a second-place finish in Japan’s top division called J-League 1. Nishimura also aided in Omiya Ardija’s promotion into J-League 1 following the 2004-05 season. In total, he appeared in 90 league matches during his career in Japan.

Prior to his professional career, Nishimura attended Kokushikan University from 1997-2000. While at Kokushikan University, his team captured the All-Japan Prime Minister Cup. Nishimura was also a part of Japan’s youth national team system, competing at the U-14 level.

With the addition of Nishimura, the Timbers now have 23 roster players for the upcoming USL First Division campaign.

The Timbers open the 2009 season April 25 on the road against the Vancouver Whitecaps. They make their home debut on April 30 when they play host to the Carolina RailHawks at PGE Park at 7 p.m. Tickets start at $11 and are available through the PGE Park box office, area Ticketmaster outlets, online at www.ticketmaster.com or by phone at (800) 745-3000.