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  • Anticlimax Boss:
    • Arakumo Gakuen in GO. They're the team you face for the semifinals and they're billed as one of the strongest opponents in the competition, and their striker is supposed to be one of the best ever (and it shows in his stats) Wouldn't expect them to fall into this trope, right? Well, you happen to get two back-to-back Eleventh Hour Superpowers, each more ridiculously Game Breaking than the last, and it's one of the very few times where you get a scripted goal, so the whole thing quickly devolves into a Curb-Stomp Battle in your favour.
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    • Delibarately invoked with Seidouzan. They're the team you have to play in the finals, they're coached by the Big Bad and they're supposed to be incredibly strong (winning one of their previous matches 19-0). You're also given the ominous warning that you must be in the lead by half time or you'll get a Non-Standard Game Over. Yet they're suspiciously easy. This is because there is no second half. At half-time, the real Big Bad takes over and subs out the entire team and their coach with his own, and you face Dragonlink instead, who are definately a challenge befitting of a Final Boss. And it's implied that Goenji was instructing Seidouzan to hold back.
  • Artifact Title: Depending on how you choose to interpret the title.
    • If Inazuma Eleven is taken only as the original Inazuma Eleven, then the trope is played straight. While Hibiki did have a minor (yet important) role in GO, Daisuke helped created Chrono Storm in Chrono Stone, and Kageyama coaches Inazuma Japan in Galaxy, the focus never goes back to the original Inazuma Eleven by GO.
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    • If Inazuma Eleven is interpreted as the original Inazuma Eleven in the original series, and Inazuma Japan (despite having 16 players) by GO, then the trope is averted; as GO has a strong focus on how former Inazuma Japan players passes down the torch to the new players.
  • Base-Breaking Character:
    • Coach Hitomiko. She was redeemed to some after The Reveal that she's been trying to stop her father's dastardly plot, but naturally that doesn't account for everyone.
    • Someoka. Some people love him because beneath his tough and unapproachable exterior he's actually a genuinely caring person, but other people think he's a hot-tempered Jerkass and nothing else. More so in the episodes where Fubuki joins the team, due to acting hostile towards him for replacing Gouenji as the ace striker. He comes across as a Tsundere to some, but as a Hypocrite who can't make up his mind to others.
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    • Natsumi, especially after GO. People who didn't care for her started to hate her after she was revealed to be Endou's wife, in favor of more popular ships like Endou and Aki or any of the guys. What makes the Official Couple so controversial is that some people claim it comes out of no where, but those that support it point out that it didn't come out of no where and there's enough build up for it in the original series. Shipping issues aside, some people think she's an interesting and well-developed character, but others think she's too bossy and mean.
    • Beta. More so in the Asian fandom than in the overseas fandom. She is considered sadistically cute/badass by some, yet annoying by others, who especially hate her for capturing Endou Mamoru.
    • Asuto in the western hemisphere. Some like him for being mature than the previous Genki Boy protagonist like Endou and Tenma, while others find him a bland Static Character compared to the aforementioned protagonist. Detractors also state that when he is compared to the likes of Haizaki and Nosaka, Asuto's storyline in Ares doesn't provide anything worthy to be contributed about the Ares no Tenbin program and even in Orion, he doesn't have a noteworthy contribution for Inazuma Japan, making him come off as a Flat Character in the process. Especially as Asuto is supposed to be one of the protagonist for Ares and Orion. There's a third party who feel that They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character because Asuto's character has potential but his character arc goes Out of Focus and comes out as underwhelming.
  • Bizarro Episode:
    • The Movie, which starts out as a recap of the first season then things start swerving off of continuity; and the events of The Movie never seem to be mentioned again. An Alternate Continuity where Endou could easily point at certain people he just met and exclaim they came from the future to help him win the Football Frontier sounds pretty confusing.
    • Episode 100 when Hiroto and Kogure get lost in the woods, and are challenged to a match by a pair of Kappas, no character development happens, no new techniques are learned, and it's only mentioned in a blink and you miss it scene during a flashback. The Kappas, surprisingly enough, make a brief cameo in Go's movie.
  • Breather Boss: Kidokawa/Kirkwood in GO. After the first two Nationals teams (see That One Boss below), these guys are surprisingly easy, as most of the mid-match scripted events are in your favour, giving your team a new tactic that lets you ignore the arena's gimmick and giving one of your members an Avatar. Also, unlike the first two teams, these guys didn't know the arena's gimmick in advance, so it hurts them just as much as it hurts you. Justified, since there's massive infighting within the team as to whether to support Fifth Sector or not, and the team's captain is more concerned with having a fun match than winning at all costs.
  • Captain Obvious Reveal: The plot twist that Ishido Shuuji was the one who saved Tenma's life in GO. Anyone familiar with the original games would've recognised Gouenji in the flashback cutscene immidiately, so when The Reveal comes it's easy to put two and two together. It's also very easy to see coming from a plot standpoint: the Big Bad had a persona connection with Endou, but not with the actual main character Tenma. This plot point fixes that by making him a Broken Pedestal, giving Tenma some angst and later motivation.
  • Cargo Ship:
  • Contested Sequel:
    • The Inazuma Eleven GO series for fans of the original. Some think that it is much better than the original while others think that it is a step backwards.
    • Ares and Orion had a divided opinion when compared to both the original and GO. While some of the older fans come to like the cast in Ares and Orion, others find themselves think that it's a step back from both the original and GO in general. For the latter, this is mainly because they disliked how some of the older characters from the original series got sidelined and in their view, got Nerfed when compared to their original series incarnations. And there is also the absence of some of the memorable characters back from the original series such as Tachimukai, Tsunami and Toramaru. Some older fans also felt that Ares and Orion both pander a tad too heavily towards the Periphery Demographic of Fujoshi's and think that the pandering ruins the series as a whole. Time will tell if this would still stand for Orion as it is currently still running.
  • Critical Dissonance:
    • The sales for merchandise related to Ares and Orion is doing well. But fan reception to them is heavily divided. Especially with the Japanese fanbase. Time will tell if this will change for Orion but most fans generally agreed that it doesn't have the same charm that made them like the original series in the first place.
    • In a similar case, Chrono Stone and Galaxy from the GO installment had fans that look at it fondly. But the game's sales flopped badly that the series as a whole went defunct for a few years until the reboot that is Ares.
  • Die for Our Ship:
    • Natsumi and Fuyuka can get this pretty badly from Aki fans who think she's "entitled" to Endou's affection for being his Patient Childhood Love Interest. It got worse when GO revealed that Endou can marry Natsumi (Light) or Fuyuka (Dark), which means Aki is definitely the Unlucky Childhood Friend for him.
    • Rika is hated by the Ichinose/Aki shippers due to her crush on the former and it doesn't help that her clinginess and overall personality makes her annoying for them. But unlike the previous example, they might have ended up together in Go and Rika isn't an obstacle anymore.
    • Lalaya Obies for the Tenma/Tsurugi fans because she kidnapped Tsurugi to serve her.
  • Disc-One Nuke:
    • In GO, some of the downloadable moves are disproportionately strong for how early in the game you can get them. In particular, it's possible to get Emperor Penguin 7 extremely early in the game, at which point it's basically an automatic goal.
    • The player with White King can be aquired very early if you know what you're doing, long before you have access to most of the plot-relevant Fighting Spirits. And it's actually stronger than most of the spirits you get for a while. And White King's special ability boosts the odds of boys succeeding in duels, which, considering all your starting lineup (and pretty much 90% of the recruitable players) are male...
  • Ear Worm:
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • Fandom wise, Burn and Gazelle seem to be this. They have a massive amount of fanart and fanfiction, especially as a couple, despite only appearing a few times and being the only Aliea Gakuen captains that didn't appear in GO. Their popularity seems to come from their contrasting personalities and how they merged their teams to create Chaos, making them one of the most popular ships and therefore some of the most popular characters.
    • Nepper’s became a fan favorite in thanks to all his badass efforts and abilities in his match with Chaos against Raimon, despite appearing in only 2 episodes out of 127. More exactly, he's the only character who ever broke through Aphrodi's "Heaven's Time".
    • Endou becomes this in GO. Heck, the original cast in general has become this by GO because of the Big Brother Mentor role that they play in the series. That, and they've grown up good looking.
    • From the Ares season, Seishou academy team in general is one to the fandom, given that they got a spin-off manga all about them in Inazuma Eleven Penguin No Tsugumono. Individually though, Mizukamiya Seiryuu, Seishou academy's captain is very popular, with the spin-off making him even more popular due to his Team Mom personality and being a good senior and captain in general to his team. Being a Bishounen also helps.
    • Also from Ares, Shiratoya Nae of Hakuren. Her personality won over many and it helps that she is also a quite good player herself despite her lack of experience in soccer.
    • Tanukigahara Ponko from Tonegawa Tousen also has many fans, mainly due to being a Tanuki with shape-shifting abilities, as well as due to her cute personality in her human form.
    • Orion brings Satan Gaul from Australian team, Shining Satans who has the cool ability of changing personalities.
  • Epileptic Trees: Goes around in Orion in regards to three things:
    • Who is Mutekigahara Fujimaru? Many evidence pointed him towards the theory of himself being Lee Koubun without his mask due to their shared voice actress. Confirmed by episode 15.
    • Due to image shifts and angles in several scenes, there are theories where Ichihoshi is actually the little brother who took on his older brother's identity and agreed to be a part of the evil organization so his older brother can be a soccer player again. Confirmed in the worst way possible, depending on how one see's it. The Ichihoshi we all know is actually Hikaru and his older brother is dead.
    • There have been several theories about who is Asuto's father, but the most widely accepted answer is Shinjou Takuma. Even before the start of Orion, people started speculating this and throughout the season, there have been several hints that point out to this (Bernard's interest of making Shinjou's son a Disciple of Orion and Bernard knowing who his son was, Shinjou and Asuto exchanging numbers). This theory didn't die even after the introduction of Inamori Masato, whom fans theorized to be just a trap and not his actual father, a thing that eventually turned out to be true in episode 33. Confirmed in the last episode.
  • Evil Is Sexy: Several antagonists fall under this trope, some of the most prominent examples being Aphrodi, Sakuma, Hiroto, Burn, Gazelle and Ulvida. Most of them pulled a Heel–Face Turn, but they're still attractive after that.
    • Kazemaru was already a Bishōnen, but his Dark Emperor version is even sexier with his hair down and his uniform is more form fitting than his original uniform.
  • Fanfic Fuel:
    • After the appearance of Taiyou in Orion, fan content and fanart regarding the GO cast in the Ares no Tenbin timeline is dime a dozen.
    • With the exception of Kira Hiroto and Atsuya who are dead, fanworks about what the Ares characters are doing in the course of the Original series are also abound.
  • Fanon: It is near universally agreed-upon by fans that Kariya is the adopted child of Hiroto and Midorikawa.note 
  • Fanon Discontinuity: A lot of the fandom doesn't care for game canon because of how many different options available and a lack of "true story". Various things from the games they tend to disregard include Kazemaru's beatdown, the Kogure/Haruna ship tease (they substitute it with the anime's Tachimukai/Haruna ship tease) and Endou marrying Fuyuka in GO (Dark).
  • Fan-Preferred Couple:
    • Endou and Aki, as opposed to the Official Couple formed by Endou and either Natsumi or Fuyuka depending on adaptation. Though most of the fans got over it when they realized that she has more of a chance with Ichinose.
    • Some fans ship Natsumi more with Goenji rather than with her eventual husband Endou.
    • In "Ares no Tenbin", there are people who wanted Nosaka and Anna to be an Official Couple. Especially due to the Ship Tease they get.
    • Fan-favored ships in the Ho Yay section are plenty, but among them all, the one ship that is mostly universally shipped by the fandom is Burn/Gazelle (Or Nagumo/Suzuno) due to their Ensemble Dark Horse status.
    • Fubuki Atsuya/Nae had become a fan-favored het ship in the fandom after the Hakuren match in "Ares no Tenbin" due to their dynamic and banter.
  • First Installment Wins: The entire series still has problems overcoming the original series in terms of sales and fan reception as noted above in Critical Dissonance and Contested Sequel.
  • Foe Yay:
    • Hiroto and Endou.
      I'm in love, Endou-kun, with those eyes of yours!
    • Endou is pretty much a Foe Yay magnet for the top tiers of Aliea. Each of the captains just has to meet him even once to become inordinately obsessed with him. Or rather, Endou is a foe magnet period and the ensuing interactions results to developments that flips back and forth between Ho Yay and Foe Yay.
    • Kirino and Kariya, Tsurugi with either Tenma or Shindou until his Heel–Face Turn in GO!.
    • Kidou and Fudou hate each other, especially in the beginning, but they act like lovers playing hard to get with one another.
  • Fountain of Memes: Everything Nosaka does becomes a meme. Sitting on a bench, talking to Akane, even smiling has reached people on the western and eastern hemisphere making memes about Nosaka. Everything becomes Memetic whenever he's involved.
  • Franchise Original Sin: Some people complain that Inakuni Raimon wins its matches to easily and pulls new hissatsus out of nowhere. The problem is that the first season of every series including the original had the same problems if not even worse since in the original, half of its original members only recently started playing soccer and only two members had hissatsu and had only a book to teach them techniques while also having little to no guidance from their coach before Hibiki. In comparison, every member of Inakuni Raimon already played soccer, were part of a club before, and had a weird, but still competent coach to teach and guide them.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: The scene where Iwato discovers that Hikaru, the person whom he has been writing love letters to, is actually a guy, which shocks him so much that it keeps him awake all night. After it's revealed who Hikaru really is (Ichihoshi's ill brother), this scene went quickly from Funny to this. Made worse when episode 13 of Orion reveals that the brother is Dead All Along, and it's actually Mitsuru, not Hikaru himself, who died.
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: Specially in Spain and Italy. Both the TV show, which has become a new Gateway Series for a new generation of kids, and the games, which are top sellers.
  • Good Bad Bugs: In Inazuma Eleven GO, when the game's graphics engine decides what direction to draw a character facing, acceleration seems to take precedence over velocity. In most cases, this makes perfect sense.note  But with the Slippy-Slidey Ice World physics of Snow Land Stadium, characters may be slowly decelerating due to skidding, meaning they should be facing the direction they're moving in but their acceleration vector is in the opposite direction. This causes characters to start moonwalking. Even if they're simultaneously dribbling the ball.
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • In episode 15 Kazemaru is accused by the others of quitting the soccer club to return to the athletics club. This moment becomes harsher when he leaves the team for real in season 2 because he thought he wasn't strong enough. His teammates were right that it would happen, they just weren't right when. What makes it worse is that Kurimatsu was the one who suspected him first and announced the others about this. So what does he do when his nightmare comes true? He crosses the Despair Event Horizon and leaves the team as well, which isn't helped by the fact that the team was already falling apart.
    • Endou's mom didn't want him to play soccer at first becaused believed that's what killed her father and she was afraid of happening the same to him. In Chrono Stone, after Endou was captured, a time paradox happened where he was considered dead in a car accident in the current timeline, just like his grandfather was considered dead in the original series.
    • A lot of the characters in the series who died or were badly injured were all involved in a car or traffic accident. One of the seiyuus who worked on the show, Yakkun Sakurazuka, died in this way in 2013 and so did Kisugi Teppei, one of the members of the show's Wikipedia, in 2019.
    • In the original series, Hibiki was Put on a Bus throughout the FFI due to getting ill from a Soap Opera Disease. It gets harder to watch now that his original Japanese voice actor has passed away from cancer in February 2019.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Nosaka's "weird sitting pose" is already memetic, but what's even funnier is that according to one of Akihiro Hino's interviews, it wasn't even an original concept, but an idea that comes from a random sketch of an animator.
    • In the first season of GO, a new power called Avatar is introduced and are said to be a player's fighting spirit given form- wait, that sounds familiar...
      • To take it even further, a year after GO was first aired in 2011, Jojos Bizarre Adventure aired it's anime adaptation for the first time.
  • Ho Yay: EVERYWHERE. So much so that it even has its own page.
  • Incest Yay Shipping: In Japan, some fans shipped Kidou with Haruna. There's also the Fubuki twins which overlapped with Twincest at least when the original series is regarded.
  • Iron Woobie:
    • Tenma. His dream school is under heavy jurisdiction of managed soccer right in the first day, he has to fight on to bring free soccer back, and that's not counting the events in Chrono Stone and GALAXY. Yet even with these huge roller coaster of events, Tenma stays positive.
    • The entire Raimon team in both the original series and GO. Things may take a turn for worse as the series progresses but they still keep going.
    • From "Chrono Stone", Yuuichi. Even as he disappears to make sure time is fixed, he is only hoping for Tsurugi to continue in his stead.
    • At the start of Ares, Asuto experienced a very heavy Trauma Conga Line in the form of having his old school's soccer club abolished followed with his mom dying. All at the same day. Yet he keeps on moving.
  • It's Short, So It Sucks!:
    • The biggest complaint about how Ares anime was how short it was with special mention to the match between Inakuni Raimon and Zeus which only had a few scenes.
    • The final match in the Orion anime is only one and a half episode long which kinda makes it underwhelming compared to other final matches of the season which at least take around 3 episodes.
  • Jerkass Woobie:
    • Fudou might be rude, arrogant and sometimes plays violently, but it's hard not to feel sorry for him after all he's been through. His father had to quit his job due to being blamed for his boss' mistakes and pursued by debt collectors and eventually left Fudou alone with his mother, who told him to stay strong and not end up like his father, but unfortunately, he was convinced that becoming strong means that he has to literally get power in order to rise to the top, which is why he accepted the Aliea Meteorite and joined Shin Teikoku, only to be left behind again by Kageyama. When he joins Inazuma Japan, he's not accepted by the others at first due to his actions in season 2 and he continues to act like a jerk until he learns to work better with his teammates and finally be accepted. And ten years later in GO, he's found sleeping on a bench, implying he's still poor and homeless.
    • Kariya, in GO. He was abandoned by his father and lose trust in people as a result.
    • Kogure to a lesser extent. He might be a Bratty Half-Pint who always pulls (admittedly funny) pranks on the others, but he didn't deserve to be left by his mother at a train station and presumably be left without a family.
    • Heck, even the Big Bad of GO, Senguuji Daigo is one. His methods of controlling soccer are brutal, but you can't help but admit that his childhood sucked.
    • In Ares no Tenbin, there are Haizaki, Nosaka, and Kira Hiroto, to note:
      • Haizaki Used to Be a Sweet Kid until his only friend then, Akane, got put into a coma due to the Ares no Tenbin project which left him bitter and wanted nothing more but avenge his friend.
      • Nosaka himself was abandoned by his mother because she couldn't take care of him anymore and his father absent, and continuing to follow the Ares no Tenbin project had his emotions drained and suffer from Brain Tumor by the start of the show (Though he is fortunately healed by the time of "Orion no Kokuin").
      • For Kira Hiroto, he spent most of his childhood alone and neglected by his father who started to focus on his projects to the point of almost being a neglectful parent and seeing that his father focused on the orphans in the sun garden, especially Tatsuya (Who was the Hiroto we know in the original series), in particular, more than his own son caused him to go on the route of delinquency and convinced that the orphans are the children that his father wanted than Hiroto himself.
    • In Orion no Kokuin, there's Ichihoshi Mitsuru, the traitor who seeks to sabotage Inazuma Japan. It turns out he is actually Hikaru, the real Misturu's little brother, who has dissociative identity disorder. Mitsuru? He's dead.
  • Launcher of a Thousand Ships:
    • Tenma, too, as according to some characters he's an Endou's clone.
    • All of the Inazuma All Stars could be considered this.
    • Shindou, definitely. He's shipped with Kirino, Akane, Ibuki, Tenma, in the beginning Tsurugi and Okatsu, just to name the main ones.
  • Love to Hate: Ichihoshi from "Orion no Kokuin" to some people. He is perhaps the most vile villain that the franchise ever come across second only to Kageyama in the original Inazuma Eleven. But these people love him just for that as he proves himself to be much more of a threat than the previous antagonist in the series. So it's a bit of a sour point to several people that he had a Heel–Face Turn so quick in Orion.
  • Memetic Badass:
    • Endou becomes this as in episode 7 of GO. He's like a boss.
    • The internet claims that Gouenji is so badass that his badassery defies the universe itself.
  • Memetic Bystander: Masaru Gojou, midfielder for Teikoku, has never gotten a single line, is never even referred to by name (the only reason his name is even known is because the games have individual data for each and every one of the 1000+ characters, including a name and short bio), looks like he's in his 30s despite being a high schooler, and his face seems to be permanently frozen in one facial expression best described as "you might wanna draw your curtains." He won a popularity contest thanks to the meddling of 2ch; it's a long story really. The creators noticed this and gave him an appearance in the GO movie (the only member from Teikoku sans the ones who joined Inazuma Japan to appear in GO at all) and a cameo in Danball Senki.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • "SAKKA YAROUZE!" — The Internet's View Of Everything That Comes Out Of Endou's Mouth
    • "WHAT THE HELL ARE THOSE NETS MADE OF?!" Because, seriously.
    • "KAAAAGEEEYAAAMAAAAA!" Quoted for Kidou's constant dramatic screaming of his name.
    • Where the hell is the ref?! / What are they paying the refs for?!
    • Summarizing the series as "little boys playing magical soccer".
    • * Insert Sport Here* YAROUZE! Then drawling the characters from the show playing said sport.
    • FIRE LEMONADE Explanation 
    • CAR ACCIDENTExplanation 
    • Penguins!Explanation 
    • Writing "soccer" as "SAKKA". This is often used for poking fun at how common it is to hear this word right out of the cast's mouth.
    • Super Saiyan Kozoumaru Explanation 
  • Moe: Fubuki and Tachimukai from the original series. Shinsuke and Hikaru from GO.
  • Moral Event Horizon:
    • Fuyukai crosses it when he tries to kill the kids in a bus accident by tampering with the bus that Raimon were going to take to the regional finals just to save his own skin. Indirrectly, Kageyama crosses it as well, because he's the one who manipulated Fuyukai into doing something like this. If this can be overlooked, he definitely crosses it when he directly tries to crush Raimon to death with iron bars.
    • Ichihoshi from Orion crosses it in episode 4 when he tries to injure or even kill Endou with a spike he attached to the ball. If that didn't convince some people, framing Kidou for doping and later, Endou for a violence Endou never commited would do it.
  • Narm Charm: As said by a YouTube user:
    "This storyline is so stupid, but in such a lovable way."
  • Nintendo Hard: The Taisen Routes in the games can vary from the easiest thing in your life to this, especially if you go into the Level 99 Taisen Routes unprepared.
    • The post-story teams can be notorious for this, Inazuma Legend Japan in Chrono Stone can overpower your Keshins and Mixi-Maxes in their normal state without using a hissatsu. A normal shot from them can take just about all of your defenders lined up against the ball to stop it, and if that doesn't work; leave it to your goalkeeper's Keshin Armed Mixi-Max hissatsu to sto- oh, it scored.
  • Periphery Demographic: CAN YOU BELIEVE THIS FUJOSHI FODDER IS FOR BOYS?!!
    • And then the first Ares episode to air has a Shower Scene with Haizaki and Kidou, seems like Level-5 embraced it.
  • Player Punch: A non-lethal variant in the second game, when Kazemaru is the victim of a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown that gets him Put On An Ambulance.
  • Scrappy Mechanic: The new scouting system in the GO video games, in which you need to obtain items and sometimes multiple other characters for just one. Also having to set off event flags to score goals, and a draw resulting in an automatic loss rather than extra time can rub people the wrong way.
  • Ships That Pass in the Night:
    • Fudou/Fuyuka is the most popular hetero ship for both the characters and one of the most popular het ships fandomwise even though they never interact even once throughout the entire series. The ships popularity might stem from their similar names, relationship with Coach Kudou and fondness for...bananas.
      • Another Fudou related ship in Japan is shipping him with Teikoku scout character, Takanashi Shinobu. Shinobu only appeared once as part of Shin Teikoku in the anime and barely interacted with Fudou by much, but Japanese fans thought the two look good together and in fanarts, are often shown having Belligerent Sexual Tension with each other.
    • Max and Handa had little to no interaction on-screen, but the couple still has a fair share of fans. Sure, their Dark Emperor versions had Revolution V, which is one of the gayest hissatsus, but they weren't themselves back then.
    • For whatever reason, several Japanese fans had taken to shipping Ares Kira Hiroto and Norika. They don't interact by much but these fans took liking at the thought that Hiroto respects her spunk as a goal keeper and soccer player and went from there.
  • That One Boss: Has its own page.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • Several people feel this about Max, because he was never truly given a chance to shine. He was mostly Out of Focus in season 1, then Put on a Bus at the beginning of both season 2 and 3 along with four other guys (who may count as well, depending on who you ask). Especially in the latter case, because when it looked like he would be given a second chance by becoming a member of Inazuma Japan, it was blown up by him not qualifying in the end, despite showing that he has potential.
    • Shadow has this even worse. He is the only member of Raimon who was never involved in the main plot, much to the disappointment of the people who would've liked to see more from him. First, unlike other characters introduced in season 2, he didn't join the Inazuma Caravan when he was given the chance because his hissatsu hadn't been ready yet. Like Max, his chance of becoming a member of Inazuma Japan was also blown up.
    • A lot of people were disappointed when Midorikawa, after training hard to improve his abilities and keep his position on Inazuma Japan, had to be taken off the team due to overexterting himself and never came back. He later sends a letter to Inazuma Japan about how he's been training hard in order to return to the team, but that never happened.
    • At least several were hoping that Ichihoshi's brother was kept hostage by Disciples of Orion instead of The Reveal that he is actually dead.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: The Ares anime comes off this way to several fans due to how rushed it was and didn't give a lot of room for world building except for what is already shown before the anime aired.
  • Unexpected Character: Nobody expects Taiyou, who is from the GO series, to actually appear in Orion.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic:
    • Tenma Matsukaze from Go got this from a handful of people, especially in the western community. Many people find his trait of speaking about soccer like it's a person to be very annoying and childish, rather then cute and innocent like it's supposed to come off as. Incidentally, the characters in the show and the game make fun of Tenma for this exact reason.
    • Asuto Inamori from Ares gets this for defending Ichihoshi, because while wanting to defend him from violent shoots, because he doesn't want soccer to be used for hatred may sound pure and innocent. The problem is that Ichihoshi is part of an organization whose players have injured Gouenji till a point he's unable to participate in the FFI for a while, Ichihoshi also tried to injure if not kill Endou with a spiked ball which would have succeeded if it wasn't for Kidou's intervention and lastly Ichihoshi framed Kidou which caused him to be unable to participate in the FFI by planting drugs in his bag. It's also clear that Ichihoshi will cause more problems for the team in order to make them lose and what also doesn't help is how blind Asuto is to Ichihoshi's obvious evil intentions are. This later changed with The Reveal about Ichihoshi much later.
  • Unpopular Popular Character:
    • Fudou Akio is disliked by his Inazuma Japan teammates, especially in the beginning when he still had his old sadistic personality back when he was a villain, but is nevertheless one of the most popular characters in the fanbase.
    • Ichihoshi from Orion is disliked by his team-mates sans few of them due to his role as The Mole (Early in the story before his Heel–Face Turn at least), but he's nevertheless popular enough to the fanbase.
  • Values Dissonance:
    • Mamoru and co. are startled when they discover that Tsunami is one year older than them, and look genuinely frightened that they might have offended him by addressing him so informally. To Western audiences, this will seem like a highly exaggerated reaction.
    • Irina Girikanan was viewed as a complete Hate Sink by the majority of the fandom after her Abusive Parents treatment to Bernard is given to light and outright hate her for it because abuse is frowned upon in general in the present. Russian watchers, on the other hand, thought and speculate that her actions may have to do with local Russian culture and how The Mafiya is involved. But even then, some Russian watchers felt that Irina comes across as Unintentionally Unsympathetic because of how horrid her abuse to Bernard was.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion: Expect to mistake a really pretty boy for a girl often.
    • Kirino Ranmaru from GO. It's impossible to tell he's a boy unless you've either played the game or noticed that the sub (or even dub) mentions Kirino as a "he", in fact he's so feminine to the point that some people have actually accused him of being a crossdresser.
    • Zhuge Liang turns out to actually be a girl...
  • Vindicated by History: Due to Contested Sequel regarding Ares and Orion in general, many of the older fans who once saw GO unfavorably started to see the GO series in a much better light as a result and remember that for all it's faults, GO had a great story and at least captured a part of why these very fans got into Inazuma Eleven in the first place. Not to mention, the animation is considered much more well done than Ares and Orion.
  • The Woobie: Everyone has at least one moment of this.
    • Fubuki from the first series spends a very long time struggling over his Split Personality disorder.
    • Taiyou is terminally ill and yet still loves soccer and is on the receiving end of a major Curb-Stomp Battle from Raimon.
    • From the GO movie there's Shuu, whose little sister got used as a Human Sacrifice thanks to losing a soccer game and blames himself for it.
  • Woolseyism:
    • Though the dubbed character names are honestly laughable, the localisations of the games themselves aren't half bad. One notable instance is in the first game, where Zeus's Aqua of the Gods is changed to "ambrosia", which both rolls off the tongue a lot better and fits quite nicely into the Greek Mythology theme of the team.
    • One case where a Dub Name Change actually fits: Shuu gets given a vaguely Mayincatec name, which makes sense when you learn his backstory, as using ball games to determine Human Sacrifices was Truth in Television for those cultures.

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