World Cup from Abroad

June 15, 2010

Soccer by Ashelia (CC-BY-SA)

I used to be an avid football fan but I gradually stopped watching it throughout the last few years for some reason. But it’s World Cup time and I just feel like watching football everyday again! This is the first time I watch a World Cup from abroad. This definitely changes the way you experience and perceive the whole thing.

First of all, the national team is not your team. Duh. The local TV channel here focus on the English team, of course. Newspapers don’t talk much in detail about the Brazilian team. So, you need to pro-actively dig information about your own team — otherwise you just don’t know what’s going on. This is something I’m not used to because, while in Brazil, you basically end up knowing everything about the Brazilian team by osmosis as everyone — friends, family, newspapers, TV channels — only talk about it during the whole World Cup.

It’s also interesting to realise how different is the relationship English people have with their team. In Brazil, people always have extremely high expectations. If our team doesn’t completely destroy the opponent with a 3-0 (or more) score, we just don’t feel like we were convincing as a team. “Just” winning with a 1-0 score is not enough, sorry. In England, my impression is that people have more balanced expectations about their team. They are cheery but cautious — even with the great team they have this year. Maybe it’s due to several disappointments from past World Cups. I don’t know.

All in all, I love World Cups and I’ll definitely watch as many games as possible. I’m not so excited about the Brazilian team this year but I know we’re one of the favourites for the Cup anyway! Go Brazil! Go!

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