'Arigato': Japan team earns praise leaving dressing room spotless with origami swans after World Cup win
Meanwhile, Japanese fans cleaned up the entire stadium after the nation's shocking 2-1 opening-round win over Germany
DOHA, QATAR: Japan earned an unexpected win over Germany in their opening game at the World Cup in Qatar on Wednesday, November 23. While the Japanese impressed the spectators with their game on the pitch, they also won hearts as they left their dressing room absolutely spotless at the Khalifa International Stadium.
The Japan players and staff also left Origami swans and a 'Thank you' note in Japanese and Arabic. Japanese fans appeared to share similar values as they cleaned the stadium after the match. The official Twitter account of FIFA shared pictures showing the floors mopped, litter sorted into neat stacks in the center, and even windows left open for ventilation in the Japan locker room after the team's 2-1 win.
After an historic victory against Germany at the #FIFAWorldCup on Match Day 4, Japan fans cleaned up their rubbish in the stadium, whilst the @jfa_samuraiblue left their changing room at Khalifa International Stadium like this. Spotless.— FIFA.com (@FIFAcom) November 23, 2022
Domo Arigato.👏🇯🇵 pic.twitter.com/NuAQ2xrwSI
The humble act has been hailed as symbolic of the discipline the Japanese possess. According to a Twitter user, the origami paper cranes are notably a sign of gratitude and spirit for soccer games.
Crane origami expresses gratitude and spirit for soccer games. Japanese people are a people who dress well and pay respect pic.twitter.com/eQcDEOf67i— Masayuki Enju (sapporo) (@Enju_masayuki) November 24, 2022
Their like-minded fans remained in the stands at Khalifa International Stadium to collect the garbage. With the stadium beginning to empty, the Japanese supporters took out blue-colored garbage disposal bags and collected all the trash including cups, bottles, food wrappers, and even discarded German flags as a show of respect.
This is what they left behind too. 😍 pic.twitter.com/mSrHzIsEbm— FIFA.com (@FIFAcom) November 23, 2022
The kind gesture earned appreciation online, with several praising Japan's beautiful culture while others commended their progress after the big upset.
Japan’s Ritsu Doan and Takuma Asano scored in the last 15 minutes to give Japan their maiden win in the Group E opener on Wednesday. They will next face Costa Rica on Sunday. A win will take them through to the knockout stages. Meanwhile, Spain dealt Costa Rica a one-sided 7-0 blow on Wednesday.
According to the DailyMail, another set of pictures was also shared showcasing Japan's spotless dressing rooms at the 2018 World Cup in Russia and the 2019 Asian Cup, also held in Qatar.