brazil world cup

In the months leading up to the World Cup, Brazilians became accustomed to muttering “imagina na Copa” or “imagine this happening during the World Cup” in response to every type of annoyance, irritation or problem facing the country, such as bad transportation, crime etc. The idea expressed their horror at how foreigners visiting the country for the World Cup would cope when confronted with the same issues.

In a country which generally loves foreign visitors but in many of whose cities “gringos” – as they are called – are normally not a particularly common sight, this apprehension grew out of proportion. “Imagine”, for example, how the gringos would react when reading a menu and coming across the phrase “against the Brazilian beef”, a literal translation of the Portuguese name of a certain cut of steak, contra filé brasileiro. Read more

When in 2007, Fifa president Sepp Blatter awarded Brazil the right to host the 2014 World Cup, Brazilians celebrated like they had won the final already.

So why is that – with only 14 days to go before the kick-off at São Paulo’s Itaquerão stadium – people do not seem more animated? Brazilians seem to be moving slower than in the past with their normally effusive efforts to decorate everything in yellow and green, the colours of Brazil’s Seleção, the national teamRead more