(BBC) – After a heated World Cup match, the stands are usually left with food waste, cups and wrappers scattered in the heat of the moment.
Japanese fans certainly had reason to go wild on Tuesday night. Their side won their opening game, beating Colombia 2-1, and securing the team’s first victory against a South American side.
But after the team swept Colombia off the pitch, Japanese fans also did their share of sweeping: meticulously cleaning up their rows and seats in the stadium.
Equipped with large rubbish bags they brought along, the fans marched through the rows picking up rubbish, to leave the place just as neat as they had found it.
And not for the first time – supporters of the “Samurai Blue” have never failed to stick to their good manners.
“It’s not just part of the football culture but part of Japanese culture,” Japan-based football journalist Scott McIntyre told the BBC. He is in Russia following the team and was not at all surprised by the somewhat different nature of Samurai Blue fans.
“You often hear people say that football is a reflection of culture. An important aspect of Japanese society is making sure that everything is absolutely clean and that’s the case in all sporting events and certainly also in football.”