Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Football culture

Football culture
Football quickly became a passion for Brazilians, who often refer to their country as "o país do futebol" ("the country of football"). Over 10,000 Brazilians play professionally all over the world.Football has a major effect on Brazilian culture. It is the favorite pastime of youngsters playing football on streets. The World Cup draws Brazilians together, with people skipping work to view the national team play, or employers setting up apparatus for employees to watch. The general elections are usually held in the same year as the World Cup, and critics argue that political parties try to take advantage of the nationalistic surge created by football and bring it into politics. Former footballers are often elected to legislative positions.
One unique aspect of football in Brazil is the importance of the Brazilian state championships. For much of the early development of the game in Brazil, the nation's size and the lack of rapid transport made national competitions infeasible, so the competition centered on state tournaments and such inter-state competitions as the Torneio Rio-São Paulo. Even today, despite the existence of a national tournament, the state tournaments continue to be hotly contested and the intrastate rivalries remain intense.

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