Stockport County: Fan Akito Aoki travels from Japan to watch non-league side

Akito Aoki
Akito Aoki says he has supported Stockport County for around nine years

How did a chance find on a video game lead to a lad from Japan travelling almost 6,000 miles to watch Stockport County?

Akito Aoki was the National League club's special guest for his "beloved" County's home game against Bromley on Saturday, and they certainly rolled out the red carpet.

Aoki was treated to a three-course meal before kick-off and presented the match ball to the referee, as well as being lined up to conduct the half-time draw.

Akito Aoki
Aoki was the special guest for Stockport's National League game against Bromley

"I like video games and I found Stockport County and I chose [to support] Stockport County," Aoki, who found the club playing Fifa, told BBC Radio Manchester.

"I have supported them for about eight to nine years but this is my first time at Edgeley Park. It has been very fun and I am staying here in Stockport for one week."

His heart would have been in his mouth when he saw the weather forecast of Storm Dennis hitting the UK, but thankfully for him the game went ahead following a pitch inspection.

During his stay he was shown the sights of the Greater Manchester town, namely the watering holes. "I went to four pubs yesterday and met many friends," he posted on Facebook.

Aoki, who says midfielder Danny Lloyd is his "favourite" player, has gained a cult following and as one fan said: "Up the Akito Hatters."

Akito Aoki
Aoki tested himself on the pool table at Stockport's Sir Robert Peel pub
Akito Aoki
Just a half on this occasion
Akito Aoki
Meeting the locals
Akito Aoki
And another

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