He is one of Japan's pivotal players. Being the son of Ichiro Misaki, a divorced landscape painter, he had to follow his father throughout the country, unable to make friends in the long term. Before going to Nankatsu, he played with Hyuga, Sawada and Wakashimazu at Meiwa FC and with Matsuyama and Oda at Furano FC.
Kids' Dream arc
Moving to Nankatsu, a city that gives football more important than ever, Misaki had to register himself in one of Nankatsu's two elementary schools: Nankatsu and Shutetsu. He paid a visit to Nankatsu elementary school, only to be told that everyone, including the principal, went out to watch a football match between the two schools. When he arrived there, he managed to play the extra time game for Nankatsu, replacing Ishizaki, who was injured his left leg from breaking Shuutetsu's birdcage tactic by himself in the match. That day, the Golden combi between Tsubasa Ozora and Taro himself was created. Misaki played as a regular offensive midfielder at Nankatsu. After Nankatsu SC's victory in the national championship, Misaki had to leave again, and he didn't want his friends to know, afraid that it would be too painful to see everyone before leaving. His friends eventually discovered the truth though, and he received a ball with handwritten messages from everyone on it, as a long shot made by Tsubasa directly to his bus since he had already left by the time his friend arrived at the bus stop.
Boku wa Misaki Taro (1984)
A month after the 6th Yomiuri Land National junior tournament, the Misakis traveled to Kyushu. Ichiro Misaki left his son in the said city while having a painting exhibition as a result of his journeys throughout Japan. There, Yumiko Yamaoka, Taro's stranged mother, met with Ichiro. Yumiko wanted Taro to live with her. Ichiro agreed because he had to go to France to continue his painting career and did not want to see Misaki leave his friends behind again. However, when Ichiro takes him to Yamaoka's residence, Misaki said that "I am Taro Misaki, not Taro Yamaoka" (hence the title of the one-shot), and he would to go with his father to France.
Battle of World Youth arc
Holland Youth Special
During three years in high school -being the runner-ups for three consecutive years-, Misaki and the Nankatsu team couldn't defeat Hyuga and the Toho Academy, and could only win once when Hyuga wasn't playing. Being in a really bad condition in the game against Netherlands Youth, Misaki felt helpless without Tsubasa. However, he completely escaped the slump in the last match.
In the World Youth series, Misaki decided not to join any J-league club to focus on the All Japan Youth team instead. But after losing to the R.J.7, he wondered if his choice to focus on the national team was the right one. Then, he became one of the 7 players to be excluded from All Japan Youth. After that, Misaki decided to travel around the world to see the football of as many countries as possible, as he felt that it's the starting point of his football.
Returning after the first round of the Asian preliminaries, he was accepted to be back in the team after winning against the R.J.7. Misaki improved his skills, becoming the only one being able to follow Tsubasa at full throttle at the end of the Asian preliminaries.
At the same time, Taro more or less reconciled with his mother met his kind stepfather, and promised his sister Yoshiko to hang out with her. However, at the end of the pleasant visit, he saved the young girl from being hit by a bus, but in exchange, he seriously injured his left leg.
Misaki asked his friend Azumi for a list of doctors who could help him to take part in the World Youth. He started a rehabilitation program with doctor Hiroyuki Shibazaki to be able to play at least 30 minutes in the finals. The doctor was aware that if Misaki played for more than 30 minutes, his football career would be at great risk, so he told Misaki that he couldn't play in order to save his career.
Misaki ran away from the hospital to join the final match against Brazil. When Shibazaki discovered that, he sent a letter to coach Gamo, to tell Misaki the truth and remind him not to push himself too hard. Misaki's injury worsened during the match, but being the only one beside Tsubasa to feel the danger Natureza represented, Misaki went back to the field and eventually made the assist that allowed Tsubasa to score the victorious goal, sacrificing his injured leg. After the match, he went back to rehabilitation.
Road to 2002 arc / Golden-23 arc
After going through a hard and long rehabilitation for a whole year, Misaki's objective was to join the French league, but he wanted to polish his abilities in the J-League first, by joining Jubilo Iwata. Training among the regulars as soon as he joined, he played his debut match along with Ishizaki and Urabe, against the Urawa Reds, and more precisely Sawada, as well as Hayato Igawa, who has an impressive football career. Misaki helped Jubilo win the match, proving that his play was worthy of the J-League, and most importantly, that his left leg was healed.
In Golden 23, he was selected in the Japanese Olympic team. Although another injury could stop his football career, that didn't prevent Misaki to play at his best. Confused at first when facing Nigeria and J.J. Ochado, who joined PSG instead of him, he quickly got a hold of himself. As Ochado said that Misaki is lacking fighting spirit despite his technical qualities, Misaki changed his playstyle a bit, allowing him to win the J-League in the process. In the Asian preliminaries, he scored the victorious goal against Australia, the goal that would allow them to go to the Olympics.
Rising Sun arc
Madrid Olympics classification stage
At the Olympics, he scored the winning goal against Olympic Argentina, allowing Japan to qualify for the quarter-finals. Before the beginning of the Final Tournament of the Madrid Olympics, both Tsubasa and Misaki decided to polish their combi play by developing their ultimate technique. They trained in the Riazor Beach in order to fulfill this feat. The only one who knew of this ultimate technique was Ishizaki, who knew how to do a high and strong cross to the keeper's area.
Madrid Olympics final tournament
During the 1st half-time, after Ishizaki surprised everyone with his newly mastered Heel Lift and his Face Trap, eluding Germany's defense, he opted for a long and strong cross, a cross that was aimed for Japan's Golden Combi, where Tsubasa and Misaki who simultaneously rotated their bodies in the air, using their arms to do an Arrow Shot and then doing both a Rolling Overhead and a Diving Volley, thus using the High Speed Tornado Sky Alpha, scoring a goal against Muller.
To be updated as series progresses.
Personality and appearance
Compared to the cheerful and easygoing Tsubasa Ozora, the firm and secure Genzo Wakabayashi, the hot-blooded Kojiro Hyuga, the friendly and straight-forward Hikaru Matsuyama, or the calm and analytic Jun Misugi, Taro Misaki is much more soft-spoken and introverted. He is notably quieter and more gentle to his teammates and friends, but also relatively optimistic and willing to step up to a challenge if it means reaching his goal, no matter how difficult. In games, Taro is not aggressive nor offense-focused and prefers to assist over the score.
He is one of the few earlier characters to claim they are friends with the ball, beside players such as Tsubasa and Carlos Santana. Because of his sense of trust in both the ball and his own skills, he rarely questions himself in a way that inhibits his performance. Taro is also willing to cooperate with others regardless of whether or not he has known the other players in the past or the past they may have shared. An example can be seen in Taro's instant compliance with Louis Napoleon's intervention in his short clash with France Jr. Youth. Despite his willingness to play with others, he is a bit more hesitant to interact with others more personally.
His timid personality has its roots most probably because he has been mostly friends with the ball (like Tsubasa) and has traveled with his father all both alone throughout Japan and France. Also, due to the divorce of his parents, he was doubtful to establish long-term brotherhood or friendships with others and was doubtful to reconcile with his mother at first. Contrary to most grade school players, Misaki is a student with exceptional grades.
This timid and doubtful trait was noticed from both Coach Gamo and later on from his rival J.J. Ochado. In order to become the main pivot of the team and win without Tsubasa, Taro had to leave the past behind and became the playmaker, and score himself with long shots or with corner shots. With the Boomerang Shot, Hyuga was surprised to see Misaki score with a full resolution during the match against Saudi Arabia, and in Golden-23, Misaki also developed the S.S.S, which proved to be key to win against U-22 Nigeria and also to win games in the J1 League with Jubilo Iwata.
Physically speaking, Taro is a young man with delicate features. He strongly resembles his estranged mother Yumiko (like his sister, Yoshiko), but with his father Ichiro's color scheme. He is mentioned at times to be quite good-looking.
- Main article: Taro Misaki/Techniques
- Main article: Taro Misaki/Gallery
- His name is Tom Misaki in the Latin American dub and Carlos Misaki in the Brazilian dub (Sometimes Taro was called Brikes in the 1983 anime, being confused with Kazuki Sorimachi). Yasin in Arabic the dub. His Chinese name is Taylor (泰萊).
- His name is Tom Becker in the Italian and Spanish dubs, Ben Becker in the French dub, and Tobi Misaki in the Portuguese dub.
- He makes a cameo appearance in episode 5 from Rosario + Vampire.
- He's seen wearing glasses in a scene in the manga, which is considered to be a nod to how he is Yoichi Takahashi's favorite character.
- He wore the #16 jersey only in the 2001 anime.