August 28, 2014
Bill Faries – Bloomberg, 8/28/2014
American enthusiasm for soccer’s World Cup prompted Brazil to shift more of its advertising toward the U.S. ahead of the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, the head of Brazil’s tourism agency Embratur said.
U.S. citizens represented just over 10 percent of the 1.04 million foreign visitors to Brazil during the month long tournament that ended July 13, Embratur President Vicente Neto said in an interview. That made the U.S. the second-biggest source of foreign fans after neighboring Argentina, whose team made it to the final against Germany.
“It exceeded all our expectations,” Neto said in Miami last week. “We’re expecting that to be the same with the Olympics, given the U.S. history and participation in the Games.”
January 30, 2014
Associated Press, 1/30/2014
The first test match at a World Cup stadium in the southern Brazilian city of Porto Alegre will not be played this weekend as planned because infrastructure work outside the venue has not been completed.
The Beira-Rio is not expected to be fully completed until late February, but local club Internacional was set to host matches with limited attendance beginning on Sunday. The matches would serve as test events as the stadium prepares to host five World Cup games in June.
The decision not to play at the Beira-Rio was made because of all the infrastructure work outside the venue.
January 8, 2014
Jenny Barchfield – Associated Press, 1/7/2014
A light rail system that was meant to help soccer fans get around World Cup host city Cuiaba, in Brazil’s remote Mato Grosso state, will not be ready in time for the tournament, a top state official says.
Mauricio Guimaraes, who heads World Cup projects in the far western state, said the 13 mile-long train lines won’t be completed until December, more than five months after the end of the World Cup.
Mato Grosso’s infrastructure projects have been plagued by delays, and news reports say 47 out of the state’s 56 World Cup-related projects are delayed. Cuiaba’s Arena Pantanal stadium, which is scheduled to hold four World Cup matches starting with Chile vs. Australia on June 13, was among six World Cup stadiums throughout Brazil that missed the Dec. 31 delivery deadline set by world soccer’s governing body, FIFA.
July 23, 2013
Jo Griffin – Al Jazeera, 07/23/2013
It was a dark chapter in Brazil’s history that shocked the world and sowed the seeds of social reform after eight street children were gunned down by off-duty police officers outside the Catholic Candelaria Cathedral on July 23, 1993.
Twenty-years later, some observers are questioning if the upcoming World Cup in 2014 and 2016 Olympics will lead to further police abuse against vulnerable young people as authorities attempt to clean up Rio de Janeiro. The anniversary also puts the spotlight on persistent accusations of police brutality, mostly against Brazil’s most impoverished people.
While celebrations are underway with the visit of Pope Francis to Rio, the grim Candelaria anniversary will be marked with several sombre events and marches outside the church.
June 17, 2013
Rob Hughes – The New York Times, 06/16/2013
The Confederations Cup now playing in Brazil is window dressing. It is a rehearsal to test the host’s ability to stage next year’s World Cup in front of fans who have lived on memories for most of their lives.
Brazilians dream of Jogo Bonito, the Beautiful Game. They cannot escape the past, and not simply because the likes of Pelé and Tostão are commentators reminding them that things are not what they were in their day.
But maybe there is one player who can live up to their past.
March 22, 2013
BBC News, 03/22/2013
A group of indigenous Brazilians has been evicted from the building they had been occupying in Rio de Janeiro for more than six years.
Police used tear gas and rubber bullets to dislodge the indigenous people from the former museum.
The building is next to the famous Maracana football stadium.
March 21, 2013
Yahoo Sports/Associated Press, 03/21/2013
World Cup organizers in Brazil say they have signed a $17 million deal with the United Nations to help host the tournament.
Claudio Monteiro, the head of World Cup preparations in Brasilia, says the capital’s organizing committee signed the deal with the U.N. Development Program this week.
The U.N. will provide temporary structures outside the stadium to house support services and provide some security services.