The characters of Hungry Heart: Wild Striker!
Kyousuke Kanou or better said, Kyousuke Narumi
The protagonist of the story. Called Orangehead jokingly by some of his friends, Kyousuke learned the ins and outs of soccer from his illustrious elder brother, A.C. Milan playmaker Seisuke Kanou. After Seisuke's departure, he slowly loses interest in the game, but rediscovers his love for it after a fated meeting with Miki. Initially the coach of Jyoyō Akanegaoka's women's soccer team, the determination exhibited by the girls, especially Miki, invigorates his passion for soccer, and soon he joins the male soccer team, emerging as their ace striker.
- Almost Kiss: Him and Miki, as seen here.
- Always Someone Better: Towards his older brother, Seisuke. Their relationship is loving but strained, since Kyosuke has a low self-worth and hates the comparisons.
- Belligerent Sexual Tension: Kyousuke and Miki squabble a lot, but there's quite a bit of affection there as well.
- Big Little Brother: Standing side by side with Seisuke, he's got a few centimeters over him despite being the younger of the two.
- Dark and Troubled Past: He used to be a delinquent, after not only the comparisons to his brother Seisuke finally got to him but he found out that he was an adopted child: both events dealed HUGE blows to his self-esteem and made him rebel against his family and the world around him.
- Expy: He's pretty much Hanamichi Sakuragi, only less egocentric and as a soccer player.
- Fiery Redhead: He actually bleaches his hair, but counts nevertheless.
- The Hero: As the protagonist of the series
- I Am Not My Father: His biggest issue is that he's constantly compared to his brother. Somewhat downplayed given that Kyosuke doesn't hate Seisuke, only the comparisons.
- Japanese Delinquents: Became this after quitting soccer in junior high. He later abandons it, although he still keeps his hair dyed.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Rude, impulsive, at times a bit of an idiot, but a kind guy anyway.
- The Nicknamer: Gives nicknames to some of his friends, such as calling Mori "Glasses-Wearing Monkey", Esaka "Osaka", Kamata "Sergeant Chin" and Yuuya "Nesthead".
Kyousuke's older brother. When he was younger, he led both his middle and high school's soccer teams to the nationals and won, and was in the top three in high school. A world-renowned player before 17, he also had a J. League contract before age 21, and later became the A.C. Milan star and captain.
- Academic Athlete: Not only is he a great player, he also had excellent academic grades.
- The Ace: Handsome, naturally talented, kind-hearted, charismatic... the guy pretty much has everything. Save for health, he later states that he has what can easily become a Career-Ending Injury.
- Big Brother Mentor: Not only to his little brother, whom he trained in soccer since childhood, but also to Kyosuke's friends when he drops by. i.e, it's him who told Esaka that he vouched for him to become team captain.
- My Greatest Failure: He tells Kaori that he heavily blames himself for Kyosuke's troubles.
- Official Couple: With Kaori.
The Kanou parents
Kyousuke and Seisuke's parents, whose relationship with their younger son is heavily strained.
- Parents as People: The dad is very stern to Kyosuke, but does love him deeply. The mom is a sweet House Wife who worries a lot for both of her sons.
- Tragic Dream: The Kanous were best friends with Kyosuke's birth parents, Keisuke and Mitsuko Narumi, and since Mr. Kanou wasn't as good in the sport as Keisuke he decided to support his best buddy as much as he could. Then, Keisuke and Mitsuko died in an accident...
- Voiced by: Natsuki Katou (original), Yasmil López (first Latin-American Spanish dub), Angélica Villa (second Latin-American Spanish dub)
Kyousuke's closest friend, and the captain of the Akanegaoka female soccer team. Despite their frequent fights, the two eventually fall in love with each other.
- Expy: A more Hot-Blooded Sanae, basically, albeit one who actively plays the sport.
- Meganekko: She uses reading glasses, as seen in the Almost Kiss scene.
- Passionate Sports Girl: She's the most talented player in the school's female soccer team.
- Plucky Girl: She's resourceful, cheerful and very stubborn.
- Tsundere: A Type B, she's very sweet and cheerful, unless Kyosuke is around
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Green, more exactly.
Rafael Rodrigo del Canto
- Voiced by: Katashi Ishizuka (original), Héctor Indriago (first Latin-American Spanish dub), Arturo Castañeda (second Latin-American Spanish dub)
A transfer student from Brazil who wants to go pro in order to help his large family. While he appears to be cold, self-centered and only driven by money at first, his attitude radically changes after his meeting with Kyosuke. Rodrigo is Jyoyo's playmaker, who earns the interest of several professional J. League clubs.
- Accidental Misnaming: As a minor Running Gag, the school's principal never seems to get his name right.
- The Dutiful Son: He went to Japan to get a good soccer contract and be able to support his numerous family.
- Foreign Exchange Student: Well, one of two - the other is the half-Swedish Sakai.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Very cold and quite rough around the edges, but kind underneath.
- Money, Dear Boy: His motivation, at first. Which clashes badly with his desire to stay in the team when he's offered a nice contract.
- Self-Made Man: He wants to be this real badly.
- Vitriolic Best Buds: He develops this dynamic with Kyousuke and Sakai.
Sakai Jefferson Kouji
- Voiced by: Masaya Takatsuka (original), José Manuel Vieira (first Latin-American Spanish dub), Miguel Ángel Ruiz (second Latin-American Spanish dub)
A half-Japanese transfer student from Sweden, known for being attractive to women. Jyoyō's star goalkeeper learns to overcome his repressed fear of injury through his interactions with his new teammates. Sakai shares a strong bond with both Rodrigo and Kyosuke.
- Achilles' Heel: Early on, shots near the posts cause him to become paralyzed, as a result of hitting his head once. He eventually overcomes it.
- Chick Magnet: He's really, really handsome.
- Foreign Exchange Student: One of two, the other being the Brazilian Rodrigo. He later has to face his dad so he can stay in the school.
- I Just Want to Have Friends: His main reason to join soccer teams is his desire to forge friendships, which isn't easy for him since his dad keeps traveling around. So when his dad comes back and says they're moving away again...
- Mixed Ancestry: Son of a Japanese man and a Swedish woman.
- Mommy Issues: As a child he was a Momma's Boy, but his mother was an Ill Girl and her death deeply marked him.
- Unrequited Love: Implied to have feelings for the already spoken for Kaori.
- Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: He's got a repressed, but deep fear of suffering injuries to his hands.
Jyoyo's team captain and playmaker prior to Rodrigo's takeover. Sako is levelheaded, mentally quick and always willing to help his teammates. He has a rivalry with Ryosei's captain and genius playmaker Furuki during high school. He and Furuki end up being teammates in university.
- Voiced by: Kenji Nomura (original), Manuel Bastos (first Latin-American Spanish dub), Enrique Horiuchi (second Latin-American Spanish dub)
Referred to as "Sergeant Chin" by Kyosuke, he played forward in junior high but becomes Jyoyo's defensive leader and vice captain. Kyosuke often joking jabs at him, but respects Kamata deeply. Kamata is currently playing for a regional team and aiming for a spot in the J-League.
- The Big Guy: He's one of the biggest players in the team.
- Lantern Jaw of Justice: Which earns him the nickname "Sergeant Chin", from Kyousuke.
- Strong Family Resemblance: Looks a whole lot like his father, of whom he clearly inherited his prominent chin.
- Younger Than They Look: This guy's a highschool student? Really?
- Voiced by: Hiroyuki Yoshino (original), Renzo Jiménez (first Latin-American Spanish dub), David Allende (second Latin-American Spanish dub)
A midfielder on Jyoyo's team, known for his Hot-Blooded attitude. In the first year, he has trouble with Rodrigo's individualist attitude, as he believes teamwork is the key for victory. In the second year, he is chosen to be vice captain and has to deal with Yūya and his group.
- Hot-Blooded: Tends to lose his temper rather easily. Having to deal with Kyosuke, Rodrigo and Sakai (and later with Yuuya and his friends) doesn't help one bit.
- Team Spirit: He strongly believes in team work, which leads him to butt heads with Rodrigo in the first year, and with Yuuya and his friends in the second.
Masashi "Osaka" Esaka
- Voiced by: Yoshiro Matsumoto (original), Carlos Vitale (first Latin-American Spanish dub), Carlos Íñigo (second Latin-American Spanish dub)
Referred to as "Osaka" by Kyosuke, Esaka seems to take everything in stride and with a smile on his face. While appearing to be no more than comic relief, he is actually quite passionate about his teammates' well-being and the team's performance. He is selected to be Jyoyo's new captain by both Sako and Kamata, who both acknowledged his excellent attitude and drive to improve.
- Bald of Awesome: A talented player, with zero hair on his head
- Beware the Silly Ones: He's cheerful and a bit of a Plucky Comic Relief, but also a competent player.
- The Leader: In second year, he's chosen as the team captain.
Anime-only character. Called "Nesthead" by Kyōsuke. Kyōsuke's rival during his second year for the forward position. He also falls in love with Miki and battles with Kyōsuke in order to win her heart. He is known for his speed and striking ability.
- Canon Foreigner: Created only for the anime.
- Hopeless Suitor: To Miki.
- Funny Afro: Earning him the "Nest Head" nickname.
- Love Triangle: He has a huge crush on Miki, so he butts heads with Kyousuke for her too.
- The Rival: Wants to be this to Kyousuke, both as the team's ace striker and for Miki's heart.
Masahiko Shinkawa and Kazuya Muroi
Anime-only characters. They joined soccer to help Yūya make it into the J-League as a way to thank him for getting them out of their lives as delinquents. Shinkawa is known for his incredible speed and dribbling ability, while Muroi replaces Kamata as the team's main defender during the second year.
- Because You Were Nice to Me: They were Japanese Delinquents until Yuuya gave them the Defeat Means Friendship treatment and recruited them into his school's soccer team. Ever since then, they're his devoted friends.
- Canon Foreigner: Again, they only exist in the anime.
- Those Two Guys: For the team.
- Voiced by: Takashi Matsuyama (original), Juan Guzmán (first Latin-American Spanish dub), Daniel del Roble (second Latin-American Spanish dub)
The coach of the Jyōyo men's soccer team. He was formerly a powerful forward for the Japanese National Team.
- Beware the Silly Ones: He's kind of a Butt-Monkey at times, but he's also a genuinely good coach.
- Secret Keeper: He also knows about Kyosuke's origins (since he also knew the Narumis), but he doesn't exactly mention them.
- Team Dad: As the coach of the Jyojo team.
Manager of the Jyōyo men's soccer team. He used to play soccer in middle school, but due to an injury cannot play anymore.
- Adorably Precocious Child: Isn't he cute?
- Career-Ending Injury: The reason why he's an assistant and not a player.
- Cute Sports Club Manager: One of two, the other being Karin.
- Voiced by: Ursula Cobucci (first Latin-American Spanish dub), Alina Galindo (second Latin-American Spanish dub)
A classmate of Miki. Despite not knowing anything about soccer at first, she becomes Jyoyo's second manager when she sees how determined Mouri is on his duties to help the team despite not being an active player.
- Cute Sports Club Manager: One of two, the other being Kazuto
- Genki Girl: Cute, energetic, cheerful...
- Girlish Pigtails: Only one, tied with baubles.
- Voiced by: Yoshiko Iseki (original)
Jyōyo dormitory's cook.
- Apron Matron
- Team Chef: As the lunch lady of the school and kind of a maternal figure to them.
- Team Mom: To the team boys.
- Voiced by: Kae Araki (original), Mercedes Prato (first Latin-American Spanish dub), Jocelyn Robles (second Latin-American Spanish dub)
Jyōyo's nutritionist and team doctor. The girlfriend of Seisuke, who asked her to watch over his brother in his absence.
- Biker Babe: She's often seen riding a motorcycle, especially during the early episodes.
- Cool Big Sis: To the team, and specially Kyousuke.
- Head-Turning Beauty She's really, REALLY pretty, and catches the eye of many guys.
- Official Couple: With Seisuke.
- School Nurse: More like the "team doctor", but in practice it's not so different.
- Voiced by: Kouji Yusa (original), Gerardo Alonso (second Latin-American Spanish dub)
Ryosei's team captain. He plays ID (Important Data) soccer and later plays on the same college team as Sako.
- Serious Business: Seems to regard soccer as this at first. After losing to Kyousuke, he starts seeing the more fun aspects of the game as well.
Kaoru and Minoru Fujimori
- Voiced by: Kouji Yusa (original)
Kokuryō's dynamic duo. They are members of the Japan youth team.
- Voiced by: Kenichi Suzumura
- The Rival: To Kyousuke, once Akanegaoka and Tenyu face against each other.
Masashi "Gon" Nakayama
Like Jyōyo's coach Murakami, he was a former player for the national team. He was the first man to ever score a goal in a World Cup for Japan (in the 1998 World Cup, in Japan's final group stage game, a 1-2 loss to Jamaica), since this was their first time to play in the tournament.
Keisuke and Mitsuko Narumi
- Posthumous Characters: The two of them, since they are Kyosuke's dead biological parents.
Rie Furuki and Kana Tachibana
- Voiced by: Yumi Kakazu (Rie, original), Umi Tenjin (Kana, original), Yensi Rivero (Rie, first Latin-American Spanish dub), Cynthia Chong (Rie, second Latin-American Spanish dub), Maythe Guedes (Kana, first Latin-American Spanish dub)
A couple of girls who start hanging out with Kyousuke's friends. Both of them are fans of Seisuke Kanou. Rie is also the younger sister of Ryosei captain Akira Furuki.
- Fangirl: Of Seisuke Kanou at first. They later become supporters of Kyousuke during his matches.
- Those Two Girls: They're almost always together.
Okabe, Kubara and Shibata
- Voiced by: Jhonny Torres (Okabe, first Latin-American Spanish dub), Antonio Delli (Kubara, first Latin-American Spanish dub), Gonzalo Fumero (Shibata, first Latin-American Spanish dub)
- A Day in the Limelight: In Episode 45 of the anime they stand up to a couple of former players of Kyosuke's junior high team, who want to beat him up in revenge for the incident that got their team shut down.
- Desperately Looking for a Purpose in Life: When Kyosuke starts showing his potential as a soccer player, they start feeling they should look for something good to do with their lives.
- Ship Tease: A bit is seen between Okabe and Rie.
- Those Three Guys
Karin's younger brother. He appears in the first episode when a band of thugs knock him to the ground and Kyousuke uses his soccer ball to scare them away, kicking off the plot.
- Annoying Younger Sibling: Sometimes he can be this to Karin.
- Fanboy: Of Kyousuke.
- Small Role, Big Impact: If he just didn't happen to be there with his soccer ball, Miki wouldn't have been there to see Kyousuke kicking it, and the whole plot wouldn't have happened.
Jyoyo's female team coach. Often butting heads with Murakami.
- Fangirl: Of Gon Nakayama, go figure.
- Meganekko: Always seen wearing glasses.
- Not So Above It All: She tries to keep a strict and stern demeanor while training her team, but when she meets Gon Nakayama, she starts acting like a smitten schoolgirl.
- Screw the Rules, I Have Connections!: Downplayed, but she managed to get her team a good hotel and soccer field for their training camp in Shizuoka thanks to being related to the Jyoyo's group president.