World Cup fan sign sparks debate on getting annual leave for major events

It’s coming to that time of year where you either have too much annual leave left, or not enough. And in Japan, one employee had the perfect way to thank his boss for his – even sparking a debate online.

A man supporting Japan at the game against Germany in the Fifa World Cup on 23 November was photographed holding a sign that read: “Dear my boss, thank you for my two week off!”.

The official Fifa World Cup Twitter account tweeted the iconic photo with the caption: “This one goes out to all the bosses out there #FIFAWorldCup  #Qatar2022.”

The tweet quickly garnered almost 150,000 likes and 25,000 retweets, sparking a debate about taking time off for events like football and weddings.

One commenter praised the clever move from the man, saying: “Man collected two weeks off because he knew they will be out from group stage but they will reach round of 16.”

One said: “I’ve been in Japan for 19 years but I’ve very rarely seen any of my friends getting two weeks of holiday. We’d get one week at most during the golden week or obon. Please don’t let him do too much overwork when he comes back, don’t let your employees stay late until the boss leaves.”

Another replied: “Work culture is changing nowadays in Japan.”

“Anyone who works in Japan knows how difficult it is to take two weeks off from work,” said another. “His boss made a wise decision.”

But even the man’s place of work appeared to get involved. NTT East Official tweeted: “Please enjoy your vacation and the World Cup! From your boss.”

One social media user joked: “His boss: You said you have a family issue.” To which another replied: “Football IS a family issue!”

It comes after law firm Richard Nelson LLP warned England fans that taking a sick day to watch the first match could lead to them being dismissed, the Mirror reported.

A manager at the company said: “Due to the time difference, many of the games are being played during working hours.

“While many England fans may be worried about missing the team’s first group-stage match, we’d encourage them to have an open discussion with their employers about their working arrangements for that day.”

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