In Brief

How Japan cleaned up at the World Cup

Despite World Cup heartbreak against Belgium the Japan squad left their changing room spotless

Japanese hearts were broken last night after their gallant team lost to a dramatic last-minute goal by Belgium, but the nation’s players have been praised for “stealing the hearts” of football fans around the world.

The Daily Telegraph reports that after their dramatic 3-2 loss against Belgium in the World Cup round of 16 - a match in which they were two goals up - Japan left their changing room at the Rostov Arena “in immaculate condition”. They even left a note saying “thank you” in Russian as they departed the 2018 finals.

Belgium came back from 2-0 down to beat Japan with a 94th-minute winner. The result left the Japan players in tears and their head coach Akira Nishino revealed they were devastated in the changing rooms afterwards.

The Japan squad’s honourable exit follows in the footsteps of their fans who were seen cleaning the stands after their World Cup matches.

How Twitter reacted to Japan’s exit:

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