Homare Sawa is the first Asian soccer player to win the Fifa Golden Ball, and she received the award Monday evening, in a ceremony in Zurich, Switzerland, where Japanese Head Coach Norio Sasaki became the winner of the Golden Ball as Best Head Coach for Female Team.
Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda stated the news was quite encouraging, making him very happy, according to remarks made to local press media today.
Japanese government spokesman Osamu Fujimura stated the Japanese female team gave hope to the country to face the difficulties caused by the earthquake and the subsequent tsunami, including the nuclear crisis provoked by both disasters.
The aforementioned acknowledgements, added to the one for fair play (Fair Play Award) allowed to the Japanese Soccer Federation, made this a historical year for Japanese soccer.
The Japanese soccer team also qualified for the 2012 Olympic Games in London, England, this year, and the male team qualified for the Asia Cup to be held in January 2012.
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