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The promising relationship between the two clubs saw the Roar contact FC Tokyo in their search for a new defender, before ultimately signing Takahashi from Kyoto Purple Sanga Indonesia   By PADDY HIGGS

FC Tokyo coach Ranko Popovic has revealed Brisbane Roar approached his club for potential loanees before the A-League opted to sign Yuji Takahashi from Kyoto Purple Sanga.

The Roar announced they had secured the Japan youth international on a one-year loan deal for the 2012-13 campaign last Thursday, ending the club's search for an overseas central defender.

Popovic and Roar counterpart Rado Vidosic have stuck up a friendship since their two clubs faced off in the group stages of the 2012 AFC Champions League, with the Australian club's coach spending time at the J-League outfit over the A-League's off-season.

Popovic told the Roar had approached FC Tokyo in their efforts to replace departed central defender Mohamed Adnan, who had returned to his native Bahrain soon after the 2011-12 campaign.

"They asked us for some players, but in our situation we can't give any players up because we don't have enough players for ourselves," the Serb said.

"We want to create some cooperation between our clubs, to keep our friendship going from the Champions League, and in the future some players might change."

Popovic added he believed Takahashi's move to Australia from J-League Division 2 outfit Kyoto would be a beneficial one on several levels: "Why not? It's good for young Japanese players who don't have a chance to play here to go away to play, and to be a starting member and to gain experience. It's very important," he said.

- With Dan Orlowitz

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