But Asian players, on the whole, remain something of an enigma in the Hyundai A-League and the our closest neighbours are still our biggest untapped talent pool.
Ono, however, is out to change all that – to show Australia what he can do, and to show Japanese players they can come to Australia and have success.
“I am trying to show the fans that we (Japanese players) can be good. I need to show some good performances in the A-League, then everyone will know and more Japanese players will come, that is my dream,” Ono told footballaustralia.com.au.
What Ono perhaps didn’t count on is how hard it can be to come to grips with life in the A-League but he says he is slowly but surely coming to grips with that characteristically athletic Australian style.
“Everybody asks me about that and where I have played previously there is more focus on technique. Here I feel everybody has good technique and good quality, and is also physically strong, so there is pressure all over the park, they play a very physical game here,” Ono said.
“I didn’t play for almost two months in Japan before I came here. The first game I played half an hour and then two games of 90 minutes and of course my football image is not 100 per cent, but my body is getting better for it.
“It’s step by step and every day and every game I need to prove myself and keep improving, I feel every day I am playing better and the communication with my teammates gets better.”