Pikachu is in the clear, but the pro football player suspects one of his anime co-stars might be guilty of the crime.
Considering soccer is one sport Japanese athletes both male and female excel at compared to others, it’s easy to see why there’s so many fans of the Japan National and Women’s National Football Teams.
That’s why it may not be so surprising that after the men’s soccer team’s humiliating 0-4 defeat against Brazil last year, fans were feeling a little sour. But just how long do sports grudges last? Apparently quite awhile if you go by this picture of a certain popular Brazilian player that someone stuck in one of the urinals at the most-recent Tokyo Game Show.
It’s safe to say that the current main sports in Japan are baseball and soccer. The older of the two, Japanese baseball, can be defined by its players’ almost militaristic commitment to the game developed through the harsh training they undergo as youths.
However, with soccer, it’s not uncommon to see players with shaggy long hair or even dye jobs, and along with that a new attitude to playing professional sports in Japan. As a result, the nation may be witnessing its first true sports celebrity in Keisuke Honda: AC Milan and Japanese National Team forward and now an award-winning perfumer.
Portuguese celebrity soccer/football player Cristiano Ronaldo is no stranger to the bizarre side of Japan. And usually, he’s a real trooper about it. Whatever you may think of the man, you can’t deny that he’s done some pretty amazing things while in Japan, and has won the hearts of all soccer fans all over the country.
Except for the most recent event he’s participated in. Ronaldo attended a small concert broadcast on Japanese TV, and he was not looking thrilled about it at all. Just how miserable was he – and how miserable was the concert too? Watch the video after the jump and find out!
The 2002 FIFA World Cup was a landmark event for soccer (or football for the majority of the world). It was the first World Cup to be held in Asia, and also the only one to be jointly held by two countries: South Korea and Japan.
Unfortunately it was also a standout event for several suspicious, South Korea-favoring, referee calls that were made. The scandal has lain dormant for over a decade, but is now resurfacing following the recent arrest of several FIFA officials, at least one of whom has been linked back to the dubious referee decisions made in the 2002 tournament.
The sport of football (or soccer or whatever you want to call it) has been around for a long time and is played well around the world. As such you’d probably think you’ve seen it all by now, but the sport never ceases to surprise and amaze.
This time an incident occurred at a Chinese Super League match between Liaoning Whowin and Chongqing Lifan. With Liaoning trailing by one goal late in the second half, things were looking grim. At least they were until fate stepped in and gave Chongqing keeper Sui Weijie a parched throat at the worst possible moment…
Cristiano Ronaldo is, undoubtedly, one of the most beloved footballers in the world, and that holds true for Japan as well. And it’s hardly surprising! Not only is he a skilled athlete, he’s also a drop-dead gorgeous man. Like Don Draper in cleats, we suppose.
And in a video from last year that’s getting tons of attention now, Ronaldo also proves that he’s a true gentleman! But what do Japanese commenters think about the video?
Ever wonder what would happen if all your favorite superheroes got together to battle it out in a game of soccer/football? While we regret not thinking it up first, the folks over at Ronnie Street Stunts ran with their brilliant idea, bringing together heroes from comics, video games, and novels alike and pitting them together in the ultimate showdown of ultimate destiny. Good guys, bad guys, and explosions all included!
Soccer (or for those of you across the pond, football) is one of those sports you either love or hate. Some find the game thrilling, others can’t understand how a 1-0 victory is anything but an absolute bore. But even if you aren’t one of those people who are able to fully appreciate “the beautiful game,” we have a feeling you’re going to love the following set of photos featuring cute kitties instead of soccer balls.
Because who could resist the sight of Team Japan’s keeper, Eiji Kawashima, looking like he’s trying to wrangle a bunch of cats?
With Japan’s early defeat in the last FIFA World Cup finals, fans were eagerly awaiting a rebuilt and re-energized team under the guidance of new coach Javier Aguirre. This new national team is set to kick off for the first time on 5 September against Uruguay followed by a match against Venezuela on 9 September.
However, much of the excitement and anticipation held by fans of Aguirre Japan was quickly doused by a wet blanket in the form of a YouTube video posted on 2 September. In it we see what appears to be a practice session that looks…unencouraging to say the least.
Shibuya Crossing is the busiest scramble crossing in the world, with 3,000 pedestrians crossing at once during peak times and recognized internationally thanks to prominent shots in films such as Lost in Translation. So what better place to celebrate your team’s win in the World Cup? You’re sure to attract some attention, even if it’s literally just you and a flag…
The World Cup is not just a battle between nations to determine who is the strongest in the world. It is also a momentous celebration of international exchange and an opportunity for citizens of the world to display their national pride. Heart-wrenching and heartwarming stories alike are born from the event, which remain in people’s minds long after the final score has been forgotten. Some of the most memorable stories from the tournament don’t even take place on the pitch during gameplay; rather, they materialize in other acts of chivalry off the field.
Although Greece was defeated by Costa Rica on Sunday, Greek citizens couldn’t have been prouder to see their national team advance to the Round of 16 for the first time ever. The Greek athletes also seemed content just having served as representatives for their home country, as they incredibly refused individual monetary bonuses and instead asked for a joint venture that should further unite them in spirit with their fellow countrymen.
Soccer is becoming increasingly popular in the United States, conveniently coinciding with the country’s decent performance in this and the last World Cup. No news outlet has been milking the globally-loved sport’s new recognition in America more than the New York Times, with seemingly one out of every two stories coming out of the venerable outlet being focused on soccer since the Brazil World Cup began.
Other outlets, comedians, and the forever-loathsome she-thing, Anne Coulter, are having a grand old time calling out the NYT on its pretentious World Cup coverage, but the Times may have jumped the shark when it published this almost impossible to decipher infographic that tracks “Soccer clubs with players on at least two national teams.”
While the soccer-watching world has been keeping an eye on Uruguay forward Luis Suárez, whose hunger for victory has earned him a nine match, four month suspension, teammate Walter Gargano has been dazzling the otakusphere in other ways. Namely, the proud display of his Dragon Ball Z shinguards.
Midfielder Gargano posted a photo to his Instagram account two days ago, prompting a flurry of excited reactions to his equipment choice.
It’s over. With their 1-4 defeat against Colombia, Team Japan is officially out of the World Cup tournament after just three matches. The boys in blue put up a good fight, but arguably left a lot on the pitch in Group C, in what many say was Japan’s best chance to make a big impact on the world stage. But despite the disappointing losses (and one unbelievable tie), there were some truly great moments that came out of the tournament for Samurai Blue. So before we all move on and choose a different team to support, let us take a moment to look back at the matches, the players, and those crazy fans who came together to root on NIPPON!
For anyone who’s still struggling to accept Japan’s elimination from the World Cup at the group stage, we’ve got a little video clip here to brighten your mood. While it was originally broadcast on New Year’s Eve half a year ago, it features two of Japan’s top football athletes finding themselves in an amusing situation with none of the stress from the World Cup.
How would you like to see international stars Shinji Kagawa and Hiroshi Kiyotake taking on 55 elementary school kids at once?
After Japan’s hopes of advancing in the World Cup were dashed by a 1-4 defeat to Colombia, Japanese football fans have been looking for something to get them smiling again. And Ivory Coast’s goalie provided just the opportunity.
Controversial calls during the World Cup are about as unexpected as Kanye West hysterically ranting on Twitter; that is to say, it happens a lot. But when it comes to contested fouls in this year’s tournament, here’s one where the argument that it was bogus may just have some… legs! Get it?
At first glance, there didn’t seem to be anything fishy about the stoppage time foul against Greek striker Giorgos Samaras that gave up a penalty kick to the Greeks and sealed their win over Ivory Coast. Most early coverage of the game seems to make no mention of the controversial call, but when fans – who appear to oftentimes be more attentive than game officials – started posting replay footage online, some started to wonder whether Samaras actually tripped over his own feet and wasn’t fouled at all.
You know you’re pretty famous when you have your own Wikipedia page. Sure, some people just take the shortcut of writing their own Wiki and acting like they’re a big deal (I’m looking at you, weird Dungeons and Dragons extra with suspiciously specific and in-depth Wikipedia entry), but when other people write a page all about you of their own accord, you kind of know you’re a big deal.
That’s what happened with Paraguayan model and actress Larissa Riquelme when, in 2010, a photographer caught her celebrating a Paraguay team goal at the 2010 South Africa World Cup and the globe collectively paused, sucked in their breath, and shifted awkwardly in their chairs.
Atsuto Uchida, a defender on Japan’s national football team currently playing in Brazil, is making his voice acting debut in the latest Pokémon theatrical film set to premiere next month.
The producers of the Pokémon movies are well-known for inviting celebrities to voice supporting characters in the annual films, but this year marks the first time that an athlete will lend his voice to the production. Uchida himself has been a fan of Pokémon since he was a child, and his involvement in the movie will hopefully add even more excitement to the World Cup fervor already taking over Japan.
Read on to learn more about Uchida’s role in the upcoming film!