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Japan’s World Cup team: A not so spotless record

by Andrew McKirdy

Staff Writer

National team captain Makoto Hasebe revealed Thursday that it was the team’s staff — not the players — who were responsible for leaving the dressing room spotless following Japan’s World Cup defeat to Belgium on Monday.

“The national team staff always make sure that the dressing room is totally clean at the end of each game,” said the 34-year-old, who announced his international retirement on Tuesday.

The Japan team won plaudits from around the world after Monday’s game in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, when FIFA General Director Priscilla Janssens tweeted a picture of the team’s dressing room following its 3-2 defeat to Belgium.

The picture showed spotless surfaces and no litter, with a thank-you note written in Russian even left for the hosts.