Despite winning the World Cup last summer and being one of the favorites to win gold in this year's London Olympics, the Japanese women’s soccer team is still the red-headed step-child of their country’s sports scene.
According to the Telegraph, Japan’s women’s soccer team is ‘furious’ after being forced to fly in economy class to the London Olympics while their male counterparts got to fly in business class. Yes, the same men’s team that got bounced in the Round of 16 and finished 9th on their last World Cup go-round.
How does the women’s team really feel about coming second to a squad that, really, they could probably beat?
"I guess it should have been the other way around," Homare Sawa told reporters. "Even just in terms of age, we are senior."
On the bright side, the women’s team isn’t always relegated to just economy flying-status. Seeing as they won the World Cup last year, they got bumped up to “premium economy” on for their trip to London. Sure, the men’s team has been flying business class since 1996 with no exceptions, but that’s totally different.
Anyway, Sawa recognizes that so long as she and her teammates perform well in London, they might once again be rewarded with a flight home that’s less comfortable than what her male counterparts get.
"When we won the World Cup, our seats were changed to business class for our return flight," Sawa said. "I hope we can produce a good result again and be treated the same way."