A short period before the 2014 World cup- which was to be held in Brazil- Mano Menezes was appointed as the manager of Brazil’s national soccer. Brazil is undoubtedly the top soccer nation and for this reason, fans around the world were excited about his prospects. The phrase ‘Brazilian flair” has been used over the years when describing any good dribble or skillful pass. As the winners of the first three World Cup, 1994 and 2002 world cups, Brazil is the most successful nation. They have never missed a world cup tournament- the only country to achieve this. Soccer is the identity of the nation.
During the time of uncertainty, late 19th century and early 20th, Brazil’s modernity and the race were taking shape, and soccer was introduced into the country by European nations and America. The country was undergoing transition, and this affected artists, intellectuals, and politicians; hence they accepted the European model of modern civilization. In Brazil, soccer is very often a national debate, with the journalist, players, and other officials being a significant percentage of the country’s population. In the 20th century, soccer became a ‘Brazil thing’ by itself, where more people were watching and playing. The futebol language became a popular and brasilidade concept; a mixture of Amerindians, Africans, and European cultures was conceived.
As the 20th century aged, soccer gained more and more popularity, with the men’s national team becoming more successful. In the 1950s, Brazil had created a unique style of play that help them win major tournaments, Pele being their star player- arguably the greatest of all time. Brazilian history has helped in the evolution of the sense of exceptionalism, and it has served as a realm on Brazilians’ sense of a distinct and integrated nationality.
Racism was evident in the early stages of football in Brazil but has slowed down as more black players have become world-beaters. In the 19th century, a journalist argued that Brazilian soccer was deteriorating because the team had few Afro-Brazilian players who learned soccer by playing in pickup games. Also, in the early 1990s, blacks who claimed to be the source of futebol were seen as potential criminals by the press and the national government.
Another theme that dominates this week’s reading is sports and culture. European countries such as the English and Spanish partly influential in introducing soccer and volleyball to Brazil. Since then, soccer has been the primary sport in the country. Interestingly, you will find a lot of people who believe the sport originated in the country. This goes to show just how far Brazil has come.