Senegal and Japan fans help clean up stadiums following World Cup games

Jo Caldwell
June 21, 2018

Cisse captained Senegal - who qualified from Bafana Bafana's group for this year's showpiece - to their first ever win in World Cup history when a talented 2002 generation upset France in the opener of that year's tournament.

Meanwhile, the team's fans were winning hearts elsewhere in the stadium, taking it upon themselves to clean the stands before celebrating properly.

Senegal, who are managed by the only black coach at the 2018 FIFA World Cup, became the first African team to get a win in Russian Federation.

After the soccer teams' jobs were done in Saransk's Mordovia Arena, Japanese fans got to work cleaning up the stadium, reaching down under chairs and on the ground to pick up litter others had left behind.

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It's also noted Japan supporters carried out a similar job following their participation in the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

Japan-based soccer journalist Scott McIntyre is following the team across Russian Federation, and told the BBC such cleanliness is to be expected from the fans.

He said: "You often hear people say that football is a reflection of culture".

"There's definitely been a decline", said former Nigeria global Peter Odemwingie, who played at the last two World Cups and is now working as a BBC pundit in Russian Federation.

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"Cleaning up after football matches is an extension of basic behaviors that are taught in school, where the children clean their school classrooms and hallways", North told the BBC.

Several viral videos show Japanese fans systematically picking up and disposing of trash into plastic bags while donning Blue Samurai jerseys.

"Senegal achieved a historic triumph", Argentinian media outlet TyC Sports tweeted. Senegal's victory made them the only African team to win in the first round of matches.

Not only did these teams impress World Cup viewers - their fans did, too. When Senegal and Japan meet on June 24 in Yekaterinburg, we can at least be sure that the stadium will be near spotless, whoever comes out on top.

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