Japan is a soccer-loving nation, and so sports enthusiasts across the country were excited as the 2022 World Cup opened. Somewhat less joy-inducing, though, was that the Japanese team’s first match would be against perennial powerhouse Germany.
Any fears that Germany would steamroll Japan turned out to be misplaced, though, as Japan completed a stunning comeback 2-1 victory. With all the energy and adrenalin the Japanese athletes were feeling after the win you might expect them to cut loose and party wildly.
Maybe they did just that, and maybe they didn’t. But before any team celebration that may or may not have happened, the Japanese team made sure to leave their locker room immaculately clean.
“Spotless,” the official FIFA Twitter account says, and they’re not kidding. There’s not a single piece of trash left behind or even so much as a drop of sweat. The used towels have been neatly folded and stacked, as have the leftover bottles of water that were provided to the team. On the table, what appear to be leftover meals and snacks are lined up in tidy rows.
There are a few pieces of paper the Japanese team left behind, but they’re not torn open wrapper or crumpled up memo sheets. Instead…
…on the table are 11 origami cranes, an appropriate number for a soccer team, and a message saying “Thank you!” in both Japanese and Arabic.
Meanwhile, supporters who attended the game continued Japanese fans’ international sporting event tradition of cleaning up their section of the stadium before heading home.Because while beating Germany on the soccer field isn’t something that Japan does very often, good manners are a constant.
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