Pikachu And Other Pokémon Named Official Mascots For Japan At 2014 World Cup
Pikachu, along with 10 other Pokémon (which you can see in the image above) were recently selected as the official mascots of Japan's team for the 2014 World Cup.
Pokémon's selection as official mascots for Japan's team, nicknamed the Blue Samurai, involved a partnership with Adidas. Adidas sponsors the Blue Samurai, which explains why the crew of Pokémon above has Adidas logos on their shirts.
This makes a lot of sense considering the international appeal and visibility of Pokémon. It may even encourage people to pay attention to Japan's progress in the world cup who normally wouldn't be interested in soccer.