Shinji Ono already eyeing A-League return

The Japanese star's stay in Australia is coming to an end but he is already planning to return to the competition despite his advancing years.

Western Sydney Wanderers marquee man Shinji Ono believes he will play in the A-League again in the future despite heading back to Japan at the end of the season.

The veteran midfielder confirmed on Thursday he would head home when his contract runs out in May to play with Japanese second division club Consadole Sapporo.

At 34 and given his history with injury prior to his stint at the Wanderers, it would be fair to assume this would be Ono's last deal before he hangs up his boots.

But the former Blue Samurai star said on Friday his passion for football is as strong as ever and he hopes to keep playing for another decade.

Asked by Sportal if he believed his Sapporo deal would be his last, Ono declared: "No I don't think so.

"I say all the time I don't want to stop football. If I lose my passion I have to stop but I don't think I'll ever lose my passion for football. "Maybe I will play another 10 years, 11, 12 as much as I can. 

"I follow the king Kazu (Kazuyoshi) Miura, he still plays in the J-2 (with Yokohama) and he's 46 or 47 years old.

"I want to follow him and overtake him."

Ono said he planned to go into coaching "a long way" down the track and sees himself returning to the A-League.

"I want to come back (and coach) but also come back as a player," he said. 

Ono revealed he had been agonising over Sapporo's advances since November and while he would love to have remained with the Wanderers, the offer was too good to refuse.

He insisted the decision was not about money or for family reasons, but it was the right time to head home and the challenge he needs at this stage of his career.

Ono rates his Aussie adventure as one of the highlights of his decorated playing resume, which includes stints in Holland and Germany, and said he would recommend the A-League to other Japanese stars.

"I want to be the bridge between Japan and Australia," he said.

"I want to keep contact with western Sydney Wanderers and if there's a good player in Japan of course I want to bring (here).

"I'm not an agent...but I want to keep contact with Wanderers forever.

"I came here last season it was almost a brand new team and the first year we missed out on the grand final but the regular season we won the championship.

"We are still this season second on the table and we want to do it again and we have the (Asian Champions League) so it's still very exciting."