Tokyo:Gamba Osaka midfielder Yasuhito Endo has been named Asian Player of the Year, becoming the fourth Japanese player to win the award.
Endo, who finished 20 points ahead of compatriot Kengo Nakamura and Sayed Mohamed Adnan of Bahrain, was presented with the award by the Asian Football Confederation on Tuesday.
Syria's Firas Al Khatib and Iranian Hadi Aghily were also nominees.
Past Japanese winners were Masami Ihara (1995), Hidetoshi Nakata (1997-98) and Shinji Ono (2002).
"I hope I can be a role modal for young players everywhere and give hope to others in Asian football," said Endo, who helped Japan qualify for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
Endo played three Asian Cup 2011 qualifiers this year as well as six Champions League matches. He also played in three World Cup qualifiers for Japan.
The AFC Player of the Year Award is decided by points awarded by match commissioners and the AFC's technical study group officers.