In our globalising world massive cultural and sport events are extremely popular. They always attract large numbers of fans and tourists. In order to schedule a sport event such as the Olympic Games or World Cup in football a series of procedures is being conducted. Several countries bid for the tournament and then a special committee with the experts and official representatives of the international sport associations determine who has the best chances and through the procedure of voting establish the winner. This country will become the future host of the big event.
Normally, such competition as the World Cup in football is arranged beforehand in order to give the host country all the time necessary for the preparations of the infrastructure. The period of time that is given to the host country for all the construction building and arrangements is seven years. Of course, a massive sport event always requires a lot of effort.
The stadiums need to be built or renovated; the hotels have to be ready to receive big numbers of visitors. The training bases and houses for the players need to be prepared. The country has to count and divide the funds and capitals its leaders will be using for the building of the infrastructure. If everything is done right, the popularity of the event, tourists and fans, all the media and sponsors will create massive interest in the tournament and this is how the host country gets to receive a big income, so that the costs spent on the preparations will be outweighed by the benefits from the event.
In the contemporary world every massive cultural or sport event is surrounded by multiple rumors, scandals and gossips. The world has observed that with the winter Olympics in Sochi, London, Salt-Lake City, with the Eurovision events every spring, with the World Cups and Euro Cups every other year. The World Cup of 2022, which is currently scheduled in Qatar is the center of lots of arguments and discussions due to some of the severe violations and issues of social, economic, political characters.
The previous World Cup in South Africa was also criticised in many aspects during both the preparation and the actual competition. The Cup that is currently going on in Brazil was not an exception. The preparation for the event was accompanied by criticism of the country’s political and economical systems. Besides, many travelers were worried about the climate in Brazil and its dangers for the tourists.
It is a well known fact that the population of Brazil suffers a massive gap between the rich and the poor. The slums of the biggest cities are separated from the luxurious central districts by tall fences. The difference between the rich and the poor classes of the country is immense. This problem became even more worrying when the preparation for the World Cup resulted in mass protests of the citizens of the country for various reasons.
The government of Brazil has made a promise that no public capitals would be involved into the process of preparation of the infrastructure. Yet, the protests caused by the raising prices have demonstrated the opposite. In fact, the country’s parliament started to spend public funds five years ago; this means that they broke their own promise after only two years. This Cup is the most expensive one in the history of football; the organising committee spent over a dozen billion dollars on the tournament.
Political side of football is always revealed when a certain team wins or loses. The fans and masses immediately find the ones to blame in the negative outcomes and the people to greet in case the result was positive. For some reason, in many cases the people to blame are various political and cultural groups. The blames cause a confrontation, which always creates a tense atmosphere in the country and adds to the existing ethnic conflicts and contradictions. The one incident of this kind that I remember is the heated discussion that followed the drawing procedure and the show that accompanied it.
The whole ceremony was very colourful and interesting to watch, it involved traditional Brazilian dancers and performances. The hosts of the ceremony soon became targets of mass dissatisfaction of the citizens of Brazil. The publicity accused the organisers of the drawing procedure in discrimination. It turns out that initially Lazaro Ramos and Camilla Pitanga, the famous Brazilian actors and people of colour were suggested as the hosts.
Yet, the final decision of the organising committee assigned a top model Fernanda Lima and her husband Rodrigo Hilbert as the hosts. Both of them have white skin. The audience did not like this choice, because Brazil is the country with a lot of ethnic groups. In fact, the majority of the citizens of Brazil are not white. Another massive confrontation occurred after the well known match when the national team of Brazil lost to their rivals from Germany with a humiliating score. This caused waves of aggression and disorders in the streets of Brazil.
The strikes in the streets of Rio de Janeiro were still going on days and hours before the start of the event. The crowds of citizens caused huge traffic jams. Besides, the country was reported to be late with the preparation of the stadiums and infrastructure. All of these facts were threatening to turn Brazil into a nightmare for the tourists. The approximate numbers indicating the income Brazil is expected to have after the tournament from the tourism only count over three billion US dollars.
This number includes all the money that will be spent by the tourists for travelling around the country, hotels and accommodations, visiting Fan Fests and the games. Besides, the promotion of tourism in Brazil during the World Cup is going to help to raise the level of income and number of visitors coming to the country in two years, when Rio will be hosting the Olympic Games. These two popular sport events will definitely impact the popularity of the country for the tourists from all around the world. The famous prejudice that Brazil is a dangerous place with lots of diseases and gigantic poisonous bugs may finally be defeated.
The mass media were filled with all kinds of rumors about the situation in the cities of Brazil before and during the World Cup. The tournament has revealed many issues Brazil is currently dealing with. First of all, the economy of the country is very weak. In fact, it is one of the weakest on the whole territory of Latin America. Of course, the preparation for a large event such as World Cup in football caused a lot of disorders due to the increased economical problems.
The biggest mass protests of the citizens of Brazil happened a year ago (Appendix 1). The rates of dissatisfaction by the amounts of money spent by the government for the organisation of the tournament reached their peak last summer. Five thousand Brazilians came out to the streets protesting against the raise of transit fare, which became twenty cents higher (June 2013 Uprisings in Brazil n. d.).
Even though the country’s government officially spent over thirteen billion dollars on the preparations, the stadiums were found still lacking some of the seats on the first days of the competition (Appendix 2). The airports were not ready and the weather proved it. The flow of arriving tourists and fans was nearly washed out by the flow of rain water (McShane, 2014). The strikes and street fights between the police and drug traffickers were still going on days before the Cup.
Tourists reported that the level of organisation was quite low, and everything looked like it was prepared in haste (Brazil’s 2014 World Cup: A Tourist Nightmare? 2014). Some of the visitors met the protesters of the Cup in the streets holding signs saying that they should not return to Brazil (Appendix 3). People are worried about their security even though there are many policemen on every street corner. The level of criminal activity in the country is announced to be very high.
Based on the information available from the news and the Internet the World Cup in Brazil seems to have brought a lot of troubles to the country’s citizens. They have been unhappy with the way their political leaders are dealing with the preparation for the event. Numerous strikes and protests are the demonstration of the level of instability in Brazil. The Cup served as a revelation for the world’s society, it opened people’s eyes on the corrupt government of Brazil and on the growing gap between the rich and poor social classes in the country.
Political and economical situations in the cities of Brazil are very bad; this causes a high level of criminal activity and aggression among the citizens. As a result, the tourists and visitors are afraid to walk the streets of the cities; the rates of theft are negatively impressive. Besides, the tourists report various disorders and strikes still happening in various places of Brazil. Moreover, the general level of preparation for the sport event is indicated as quite low, especially knowing how popular football is in Brazil.
The infrastructure was not ready up to the very last moment. The opening game of the World Cup was expected to start on a stadium that was still being built and had some of the seats missing. All of these facts demonstrate that the country’s political leaders exploit its resources and use capitals for their own needs and purposes without caring about the discomfort caused to the citizens, especially to the prevailing poor and working classes. This country’s political system requires serious changes before another big sport event comes in two years.
Brazil’s 2014 World Cup: A Tourist Nightmare? (2014). Observers. Retrieved from
McShane, L. (2014). 2014 World Cup: Fans in Brazil Greeted with Construcion Woes, Political Unrest as Host Country Scrambles to Avert Disaster.