There were tears, but also order. Many Japanese fans were moved by the comeback of their team against Spain, which gave them the pass as first in the group of death –'La Roja' passes second and Germany has been left out–. Cameras at the Khalifa International Stadium kept showing fans of Japan crying in disbelief as the final whistle blew. However, minutes later, the emotion gave way to order and the tide of Japanese fans organized again to leave their stands clean.
It has become a habitual image of the World Cup. With the game over, the Japanese fans handed out garbage bags to clean up the stadium. The idea is to leave it as it was before your arrival.
When asked about their motivation, as the English channel Al Jazeera did at the end of the first meeting, many respond with the word "atarimae", which in Japanese means doing or stating the obvious, the normal. "We have been educated to leave things even cleaner than we found them," added a follower to the same outlet.
"It is part of our culture," argued several, who at the same time expressed their astonishment that their action is causing a media uproar.
The pattern, in the stands, has been repeated in Japan's three games in the group stage. And in the bowels of the field, in the changing rooms, a similar photo is taken: the players of the Japanese team have given a good example of their cleanliness, leaving their wardrobe impeccable regardless of the result of the match, win or lose.