Ao Ashi VS. Blue Lock: Which Soccer Anime is Better

Ao Ashi VS. Blue Lock: Which Soccer Anime is Better

Soccer has become a favorite go-to for most sports anime fans when it comes to sports anime. Soccer has been a staple sports anime type, and there are several titles dedicated to a widespread of generations. Currently, the two top soccer sports anime that are making headlines are Ao Ashi and Blue Lock. So, which of the two is the best soccer anime this year?

In terms of popularity, Blue Lock is a widely anticipated anime that will likely overtake Ao Ashi when it finally premieres. Even as a manga Blue Lock has already won big awards in Japan and was already an international hit before it even aired. However, that doesn’t mean Ao Ashi is a bad anime. 

Some viewers will still prefer Ao Ashi over Blue Lock, and I don’t blame them. Ao Ashi has its own appeal and strengths as compared to Blue Lock. Both stories take a different approach to the sport, and it’s fun to see the stories unfold between both. Let’s have a look at what these anime have to offer.

What are the Strengths of Blue Lock?

Ao Ashi VS. Blue Lock: Which Soccer Anime is Better

Blue Lock probably has the edge over a lot of the new sports anime since it takes a deeper approach to the sport and looks at the psychological capabilities of the players. Something that sports anime tend to touch on, but it usually isn’t the primary focus, especially for a sports anime like soccer which is a team sport.

Most anime series that involve team-focused sports usually highlight friendships and friendly rivalry between players, especially among members of the team. Blue Lock is all about survival of the fittest, both mentally and physically. The team cannot afford a weak member in this anime.

Even if the anime has only released trailers, it has been something that has been highly anticipated. The trailers look absolutely stunning. People who have been reading the manga are excited for this masterpiece to finally air. Meanwhile, the trailer has also caught the curiosity of potential fans of the series. A lot of new people have become hooked by the trailer and have already started the manga out of curiosity.

When it comes to the visual appeal and interesting premise, Blue Lock has hit the mark and has gotten people curious enough to try the anime once it airs. 

What are the Strengths of Ao Ashi?

Ao Ashi is an anime that dropped in early April and has been rating pretty well. While the series wasn’t as hyped up as other sports anime or how Blue Lock is, the series has been bringing in some viewers and some soccer fans interested in the show. The new soccer anime has been praised for its good animation, characters, and its somewhat realistic depiction of how soccer really is. 

The anime shows a more realistic outlook on competitive soccer. Unlike Blue Lock, which focuses more on the story over the actual sport, Ao Ashi brings viewers to a pretty balanced sports anime show with genres that hit the shounen to seinen field with a bit of slice of life sprinkled into the story.

The anime is more grounded and shows viewers how soccer really is, which is a risk for some creators to do. However, many hardcore soccer fans have appreciated the realism put into this anime. The anime shows its viewers what soccer should be like. Being realistic tends to be rare in the world of sports anime, but it was something Ao Ashi pursued to bring to the screens.

Which is the More Realistic Sports Anime?

Ao Ashi VS. Blue Lock: Which Soccer Anime is Better

Between the two soccer anime, Ao Ashi is more realistic. It is realistic because the setting is closer to real life, and real soccer rules and strategies are being explained and used during the games. In addition, the characters are also put into real-life situations for soccer players who want to be competitive.

Meanwhile, Blue Lock seems to bloat certain realities of the sport. While soccer is a serious sport and takes years of training for a person to make it into nationals, the extremes the coach goes through to make an unbeatable Japanese team seem to be on the outrageous side. The drama and psychological exhaustion were also something that was taken to a new level in Blue Lock.

What Award Did Blue Lock Win?

Recently, the Blue Lock manga won the 45th Kodansha Manga Award as one of the best shounen mangas of 2021. In its last count, the manga had over 5 million copies in circulation worldwide. The manga author of Attack on Titan, Hajime Isayama, even recommends the manga to his fans.

Additionally, Blue Lock was also named as one of the Top 3 Sports Manga Series in the Nationwide Bookstore Employees Recommended Comics for the year 2020 by the Honya Club.

What Award Did Ao Ashi Win?

Ao Ashi also bagged an award as a manga. Back in 2020, Ao Shi won the 65th Shogakukan Manga Award under the general manga category together with another popular anime, Kaguya-same: Love is War. The manga was also nominated to win an award in the 10th Manga Taisho in 2017 but ended up finishing in 4th place.

When Will Blue Lock Air?

Ao Ashi VS. Blue Lock: Which Soccer Anime is Better

As of writing, the latest anime trailer released for Blue Lock stated that the animated television show is set to air sometime in October 2022. The manga is written and illustrated by two different people. Yusuke Nomura takes care of the written story. Meanwhile, Yusuke Nomura is in charge of the illustrations for Blue Lock. The manga has been appearing in Kodansha’s Weekly Shounen Magazine since August 2018. 

What Was Revealed About the Anime Blue Lock?

The anime will be an adaptation of the original manga. So, if you have already been following the manga, then most of the plot has already been revealed. For new fans, Blue Lock is set in the year 2018, when the Japanese team finished at 16th place in the FIFA World Cup.

The performance of the Japanese team did not sit well for the Japanese Football Union. As a result, they hired Ego Jinpachi to build a new soccer team to compete. Ego has come up with a sure-fire plan to bring Japan to the top of the Soccer World. He designed a training regime called Blue Lock to choose the best striker. Those trainees who fail the training program will never be allowed to represent Japan.

The story follows the journey of Yoichi Isagai, who has entered the Blue Lock training regime to become the best soccer player in the world.