Friday Kickoff: Calls increase to halt Confederations Cup amid Brazil protests; Higuain closing in on Arsenal move; & more

BrazilProtestsRiodeJaneiro (EPA)

By DAN KARELL

Rioting in Brazil during the Confederations Cup has hit a boiling point, as the first fatality, an 18-year-old boy hit by a car, was confirmed on Friday.

The ongoing rioting and civil unrest has much of the local media reporting that FIFA could be considering either canceling the tournament all together, or even more stunning, sending next year’s World Cup to the United States or Italy, where infrastructure and stadiums are already in place to hold a massive tournament like the World Cup.

FIFA have unequivocally denied any reports of canceling the tournament, but it’s not just Brazilian media that are asking for a stop to the games. The Italian National Team, and another un-named team have reportedly requested their federation to ask that the tournament be stopped because they fear for their family’s safety while in Brazil.

This comes a day after reports in Recife stated that a number of Spain National Team players had personal belongings and money stolen from their hotel rooms.

Here are some more stories to get your Friday started:

HIGUAIN AGREES PERSONAL TERMS WITH ARSENAL, NEARS TRANSFER

Arsenal Chief Executive Officer Ivan Gazidis wasn’t kidding when he said that Arsenal have money to spent.

The Gunners are inching closer to breaking their transfer fee and wage record as they near a deal for Real Madrid forward Gonzalo Higuain. Reports out of England state that Higuain agreed personal terms with Arsenal on Thursday to the tune of nearly $200,000 per week.

Currently, Arsenal’s highest wage earners are that of Theo Walcott and Lukas Podolski, but Higuain would become the side’s top earner if he made the move to the Emirates Stadium. Arsene Wenger isn’t done yet, as rumors continue to name Wayne Rooney and Marouane Fellaini as potential targets for the club this summer.

UNITED NEARING THIAGO DEAL

Higuain isn’t the only La Liga player making a move to one of the big four clubs this summer.

Barcelona midfielder Thiago Alcantara, fresh off a stellar performance at the UEFA Euro Under-21 tournament, where he scored a hat trick for Spain in a 4-2 victory over Italy in the final, is edging closer to moving to Manchester United.

The son of Brazilian World Cup winner Mazinho has agreed a contract of more than $7 million per year according to reports in England, and could make his $26 million move to Old Trafford by this weekend.

Thiago played 36 times in all competitions last season for Barcelona, but many of those appearances were off the bench. The 23-year-old added three goals in those appearances as well.

BUNDESLIGA ANNOUNCE LEAGUE FIXTURES FOR NEXT SEASON

Mark off the weekend of November 22-24 and April 11-13, 2014, and make sure you are free.

The Bundesliga fixture list was announced on Friday morning, and both of those weekends are the upcoming league installments of what’s will be a re-match of the Champions League Final: Bayern Munich vs. Borussia Dortmund.

Bayern will open the season on August 9 against Borussia Mönchengladbach, with the season coming to a close on May 10, just under one month before the start of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. Other games to keep an eye out for will be the FC Schalke and Dortmund derby, the Eintracht Frankfurt and FSV Mainz matches, and Hertha Berlin’s home opener after a return to the Bundesliga on August 10/11.

QUICK KICKS

Andrea Pirlo has been ruled out of Italy’s final Confederations Cup group stage match against Brazil due to a leg injury. (REPORT)

Chelsea FC have signed a ten-year contract extension with Adidas to be their official kit supplier. (REPORT)

David Luiz will have nose surgery after the Confederations Cup after breaking it in Brazil’s victory over Mexico. (REPORT)

Argentine center back Lisandro Lopez is nearing a move from Arsenal de Sarandi to Benfica. (REPORT)

——

What do you make of these reports? Do you see the Confederations Cup being cancelled? Think FIFA would consider moving next year’s World Cup? Which Bundesliga fixtures are you most looking forward to.

Share your thoughts below

This entry was posted in Confederations Cup, European Soccer, Featured, South American Soccer. Bookmark the permalink.

142 Responses to Friday Kickoff: Calls increase to halt Confederations Cup amid Brazil protests; Higuain closing in on Arsenal move; & more

  1. Cristoph says:

    They said the same thing about S Africa due to them not being able to get the stadiums built in time. I wouldn’t hold your breath. It would be nice but not going to happen. USA is always the fall back option.

    • Brett says:

      Political unrest is a much more daunting, and unpredictable, problem than infrastructure concerns.

      Futbol bonito should be enough to keep the people happy for a while, it’s one of the reasons countries with shaky political situations like to go after major international sporting events, so I’m honestly shocked things are popping off the way they are.

      That said, they will not cancel the CC unless the federations themselves boycott, and moving the World Cup to the USA is a very remote possibility but one that I am pretty excited about.

    • THomas says:

      This is much more serious than anything leading up to the South African world cup. There are 1 MILLION people on the streets protesting. And they’re doing it at a time they know the entire world will be watching.

      If this tournament is the lead up to the World Cup, these protests are just a lead up to what would happen during the World Cup.

      • Remember Occupy? We’ve got to remember how quickly things can calm down. If FIFA moves the Confederations Cup they surrender to the protesters and the Brazilians realize that they have the power to stop the World Cup as well. FIFA will push through this as long as they can.If Brazil gets moved, Qatar and Russia start to realize things too. FIFA wants to quash these emotions and save as much face as possible.

        • zarathustra says:

          Believe me, this is not Occupy. Moreover, Occupy was brutally and systematically shutdown by the Feds and Local piggies. There will be an Occupy 2.0 comming soon.
          The masses are waking up and the old “bread and circus” diversions will not be as effective as they were in the past.

        • Kosh says:

          What?!?!

          Remember the Arab Spring?

          One people’s protest and political unrest does not equal anothers. We can get into the reason why you can probably wait out or out-maneuver certain protesters here at home (i.e., Occupy). But, and I am not having a go or anything, to minimize something the Brazillian people take very seriously and feel very strongly about (in fact more seriously than football, which shows how serious this is for them) is at least uninformed and at worse disrespectful.

          “Surrender to the protesters?” Dude, FIFA only cares about their little show they want to put on and then they are out. The Brazillians have to live and deal with the injustices, inequalities and poor management of their country looong after the WC and Olympics are gone. As the protests indicate, I am sure Brazillians could give a bouncing blue baboon’s backside about what FIFA thinks about their right to protest and fix issues/problems in their country.

          FIFA has no say, no power and no right in these protests. Brazillians feel wronged and they are standing up and protesting as is their right. As much as we respect our rights and freedoms so too must we endeavour to respect and stand for those of others.

          Didn’t mean to come off hot or anything but it seems like you were trivializing the Brazillian people’s right to correct and deal with their government (by equating it to another type of protest). My bad, if I misread what you said but my position stands, nonetheless.

        • Mason says:

          A friend of mine who grew up in Noriega’s Panama laughs at US protests, saying, “Silly Americans don’t know how to protest.”

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      They moved the 2003 Women’s Cup here so it wouldn’t be unprecedented.

      Last year’s F1 Bahrain race was called off for Arab spring protests. If the protests are sustained and at levels where the perception of a safety threat exists, they might pull the plug. But I would assume that would only be done as a last resort because they probably feel obligated to Brazil and know the government has spent a bunch of money. But then to some of the protestors that is half the problem. And around and around we go.

      • Brett says:

        I think this is it. I think the people understand that they can put the leaders’ backs to the wall, and if it takes losing the revenue of a World Cup to show how serious they are about change, they are probably willing to do it. The timing is no accident, that much is certain.

        • The Imperative Voice says:

          It might have to be civil unrest at the level of force majeure to give people contractual cover. I think what ended Bahrain F1 2012 was there was gunfire and that level of violence on the streets during a GP2 series race a few weeks before the scheduled F1 race. Until then Bernie E and the Bahrainis were making noises about the race going nowhere. But the teams were skittish and the level of violence gave F1 a force majeure trap door out of their obligations to show up in Bahrain.

        • AcidBurn says:

          I could see the scenario where a foreign tourist, there to watch his team in the Confed Cup, let’s say an Italian or Spanish tourist, to get seriously injured (or worst case, killed) by the protests while they are trying to get to watch the game, and yeah, that could cause some serious you know what.

        • Paul Miller says:

          The Brazilian economy is falling apart, which has certainly added fuel to the fire. Brazil went from being one of the BRICS – as in the future of the global economic growth – to now being a foreign investor’s nightmare. And with money leaving the country so fast, that’s exposing a lot of other problems.

          I don’t think I agree the timing of these protests has much to do with the Confederations Cup.

    • zarathustra says:

      Yea bring the WC to the US.
      We can have the opening ceremonies in Chicago again.
      But the recent Depression has changed the landscape here in the Windy City.
      Now we are Known as ChIraq. Take a look at our murder rates!

    • DC Josh says:

      The financial hardships associated with preparing for and hosting the World Cup is unfair. Qatar stand no chance of long-term growth — financially and in soccer — and are doomed to oblivion after 2020. Brazilians and Russians will starve because their govt’ is focused on building stadiums and infrastructure.

    • Rector & Carlisle says:

      I think the Mexican team is the other one asking for the tournament to be stopped: for reasons that have nothing to do with the rioting.

  2. 2tone says:

    These protests could be even worse next summer in Brasil. It will be a security nightmare for all of the fans and teams involved next summer.

    I feel for the Brasilian people, and they reserve the right to protest, but when things turn violent amid social unrest FIFA and the Brasilian govenrment has an obligation to the fans and teams to keep them safe. If that means moving the World Cup to another country then so be it.

    • Brett says:

      Just to advocate the opposition, that sets a dangerous precedent for the future. The fatality sounds purely accidental and from what I’ve heard the protests aren’t that violent. If a protest can derail an event like a World Cup, then what is to stop groups with an agenda from protesting in other countries to try and force political change. Certainly there are groups in the United States that would use a public event to draw attention to a political war (Boston Marathon anyone?)

      The security concerns are another matter, but with a high profile event like the World Cup those things tend to self-diffuse. In any case things are dangerous all over, so we may just be trading one problem for another in the long term.

      • “What is to stop groups with an agenda from protesting in other countries to try and force political change?” Nothing.Yes another successful protest pushes these things a little bit farther, but FIFA isn’t worried about international revolutions. Maybe Brazil is and pushes FIFA to stay till the last minute. FIFA should be worried about Qataris and Russians doing similar things. They’ve got the same issues and if FIFA “allows” these protesters to make them move, they might have to be moving major tournaments for the next ten years. Sepp’s put his legacy on the initiative to bring soccer to the third world. If it gets moved Sepp’s name is even more ruined than it already is.

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      Protestors know people are there to film the tournament so it leverages protest aesthetics up a notch. They may very well do the same for the next one.

  3. Soncho says:

    There will be even worse problems if FIFA cancels the World Cup in Brazil

    • Brett says:

      I think it could be something to really spark change. The higher-ups will be the ones who suffer from losing the cup, not the people in the streets.

      • Soncho says:

        Spark change?…Have you been to Brazil?
        The press in Brazil love to ratchet up the anxiety levels. The Olympic committee must be biting there nails

      • fischy says:

        That’s not entirely true.Have you been to a World Cup tournament? There are thousands of jobs generated in catering to the tourists, not to mention the increased revenues to state transportation like buses and trains to restaurants to all the usual tourist spots.To a certain extent, World Cup may displace some other regular tourism, but it’s a big net plus.

        • Scott says:

          This is false. The costs of hosting the tournaments and building stadiums and infrastructure far exceed the revenue from tourism.

          • Brad C says:

            You are totally wrong. It’s basic Keynesian economics.

            • zarathustra says:

              Throwing big paries for the elites that our children can be maids and hookers at is NOT Keynesian economics!

              • Columbuster says:

                It is very simple minded to just look at the gap between the rich and the poor and cry foul. I think I made some of the same kinds of foolish arguments posted above when I was in my teens. Sure capitalism makes the rich richer, but it also makes the poor richer as well. If you really care about poverty you would focus on the poor and not how much the “rich elite” have. There is only one way to help people escape poverty and that is opportunity.

                The WC and CC is an opportunity. If corrupt politicians or unethical people are getting in the way of that opportunity then let’s blame them and deal with that. But it is a fool who blames capitalism.

                And another thing…to say that the rich make all the money at these kind of events and have their parties while the poor are just their “maids and hookers” is to denigrate the working classes and people who are maids, service workers, lawnmowers, cooks, and all the rest. These people are the backbone and real hero’s of any society. That argument shows that YOU are the elitist!

              • Lalo says:

                Saying that maids are the backbone of society is easy.
                How about paying them like investment bankers! Lip service does not buy bread.

        • Brett says:

          You’re naive if you think they’re not being exploited in that process.

          • Columbuster says:

            Then aren’t we all be exploited in some way? I guess we’ll just leave it up to people like you, who know what’s best for everyone, to step in and tell us if what we are doing is actually exploiting us. Thanks for saving us all!

        • bml says:

          Brazil is spending $13.3 billion for the World Cup and $18 billion for the Olympics. The estimated revenue is $3.5 billion and $5 billion respectively with most going to FIFA or IOC. Those are estimated costs and they most likely go up significantly.

          You can argue that Brazil will have some nice stadiums and public transportation systems in the end, but there is a shortage of skilled workers and severe time pressure so the result will be shoddy work. In any case history shows these stadiums end up being costly to maintain or sit unused. 21 of the 22 stadiums built for the Athen Olympics sat unused in 2010 with maintenance costs of $124M/year.

          The evidence doesn’t support a tourist boom either. I don’t have data for World Cups, but for Olympics the tourism levels don’t change significantly nor are there any long term benefits.

          If you look at the Sydney Olympics, the OCOG estimated they broke even on the event while the Australian auditor estimated the true long term cost at $2.2 billion. Again, there’s little evidence that these events generate money for the host countries.

          The real question is could the $35+ billion being spent for games be better used and it’s looking like a lot of the Brazilian people think so.

          • Lalo says:

            The working people of the world know the answer to your thoughtful question – yes! Spend it on education, healthcare and building industries that benefit everyone.

      • Brad C says:

        Dude, the poorer people are the ones working for those with tons of money or working independently selling items, working at bars & restaurants, etc. All of Brazil would hurt if they lost the WC.

        • zarathustra says:

          You need to look at studies of the economic and social impact of events like the WC and Olympics on the host cities/countries. They devaste the working people and line the pockets of the elites. In Chicago, we were relieved not to get the Olympics.

          • Brad C says:

            Then find a credible article stating that there is no economic impact.

            • zarathustra says:

              I did not say there was NO economic impact – just that it is detrimental to working people. Please, use google and see for yourself. Montreal Olympics? SLC Winter Olympics? Many more.

              • Brad C says:

                Detrimental to working people who are making more money and selling things on the street? A lot of families in Brazil will convert their houses into restaurants. Tell them there’s no economic impact for the poorer people. Hotels will hire more maids, gov’t will hire more cops, people to clean the street, bars will hire more waiters…

                you make no sense…

          • Brad C says:

            Think about it, you are a poor Brazilian living in a favela. You can sell hot dogs near the stadium for double the price you could get in the favela. Same goes for local stores, restaurants, hotels, etc…

            All those places have to hire people and sell things to tourists.

            • zarathustra says:

              Sell hot dogs after they bulldozed your house and impliment “austerity programs” to pay for the elites party.

              • Brad C says:

                I’m done arguing with you. You have no idea what you are talking about. Go put on a mask and smash a McDonald’s window to get back at all the rich people…

            • Brett says:

              You’re a poor Brazilian living in a favela… Where do you buy the hot dogs? You can’t buy them for regular price, because they’ve just been marked up 400% in anticipation of the World Cup and, guess what, you’re poor. You really have no job. You took a labor job because they had to renovate the local stadium, but now that contract is over and the pittance you worked for has been squandered because everything available for purchase costs more because of the influx of tourists. The food marts can’t get their supplies at the same rate because the demand has outstripped the supply.

            • zarathustra says:

              Are you raising your kids to sell hot dogs and be maids? Use this economic model for your friends and family. Maybe instead of wasting money on a WC, we should invest in education and building industries that provide GOOD jobs.

              • Brett says:

                No, Z… It’s simple social Darwinism and we all have capitalism to thank. The hot dog sellers and maids will be the hot dog sellers and maids and by selling their hot dogs and cleaning up after their betters they earn their own private fortune with which they can achieve their ultimate dreams and become elites.

            • Frank says:

              What’s the long-term benefit again? Increased jobs during the tournament (~30 days) while the debt incurred to finance the stadiums and infrastructure will be around for 30 years. Yes, there is an economic benefit but it is unlikely to lead to prosperity for the majority of the population.

        • bml says:

          The poorer people are already being hurt. One of the protest issues is increased bus fairs. So a few thousand people will make a few extra bucks for a few weeks, but millions will be paying for the costs for the next 30 years.

  4. Gnarls says:

    “…or even more stunning, sending next year’s World Cup to the United States or Italy…” Don’t toy with our emotions, local Brazilian media.

    The odds of that are slim and none given the financial investment that’s already taken place. Nothing short of revolution would cause FIFA to move the WC at this point.

    • Brett says:

      So let’s light a few Molotovs and get this thing rolling!

    • bml says:

      A violent protest during the World Cup cup sufficient enough to cancel it is probably the worse case senario. I don’t know how the revenue streams are structured, but I’m guessing if they games don’t happen the revenue doesn’t come so this results in all the associated costs being paid, a PR nightmare and no money.

      Does FIFA want to risk loosing a World Cup? This is much different from construction being behind schedule.

  5. SanFran415 says:

    I’d say chances of the United States being awarded the World Cup are drastically, drastically increasing.

    Infrastructure problems are one thing. Political unrest is another beast. Together? Yikes. From what I’ve been told thus far from my Brazilian coworkers in Sao Paulo–the corruption taking place is at unheard of scales. 100s of millions of dollars is disappearing and people are going missing for asking about it.

    • RK says:

      FIFA and corruption? Incredible!

      • SanFran415 says:

        In this case it isn’t FIFA that’s corrupt. It’s Brazil.

      • AcidBurn says:

        Brazil and corruption? Incredible!

        Sao Paulo elected a mayor (Paulo Maluf) who was known by the mantra “Rouba, mas faz.” (He steals, but he gets things done).

    • fischy says:

      Increasing from snowball’s chance in Hell to snowball’s chance in Tahiti?

      • SanFran415 says:

        I look at it from a marketing and legal standpoint. Every major event has its protestors and pushback, but those are generally mild and civil.

        Brazil has a long, long history of unrest escalation. Unlike South Africa, Brazilian protests could turn extremely violent, extremely fast and that escalates concerns beyond the expected planning considerations.

        Media keep pushing this narrative about Brazilians loving soccer more than life. It’s a load of *& F(D*&F(*&DS meant to placate and deflect that 10s of millions of Brazilians are furious that this is happening.

        If people start dying in violence, that narrative disappears and the media story switches. You can’t put lipstick on a pig.

  6. Rey Pygsterio says:

    Don’t forget Brazil also has the Olympics in 2016.

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      Three big events in three years, but you also have to factor that in, in terms of cost to the government and by extension the people. And if money ticketed to construction is being siphoned off, the costs go up, people see people feathering their nests from the events (but not them, maybe they can’t afford to go even), and so forth. And because of the audacity of doing both events it’s a high level of construction, all the riper for problems. Brazil has been on the make of late, ethanol boom and such, but obviously still sorting out economics and class issues.

      • Beto says:

        3 big events in four years; i cant think of a better time to seriously improve transportation, infrastructure, economic systems, all other domestic issues!

        These big events are supposed to be the ideal time to address issues and modernize; shame on Brazil’s leadership for failling to do this over the past few years… Hopefully they can right the ship over the next few months but these kind of changes take years, why they awared these events years ago….

  7. elgringorico says:

    I am here in Rio now. The people love soccer, and most are actually upset with the rhetoric that some extremists are using about boycotting the Cup. The problem is much bigger than the Copa and all the Brazilians know it. It would be a waste of all the money ALREADY invested to not have the cup here. Sure most money will go into pockets of rich people but A LOT will trickle down as well. The world cup will be in Brazil next year.

    • SanFran415 says:

      Where exactly is this trickling down happening? Don’t piss on people and tell them it’s rain.

      • elgringorico says:

        For starters. The millions of people who own apartments and can sublet them during the cup. Construction, security crews, ushers (formerly unemployed people). Bodega owners, ice cream vendors, restaurant employees, drivers, taxi drivers, and anyone in the tourism industry. Millions of service industry people working stadiums and restaurants.

        And that’s not even counting the vast majority of the upper class who ARE NOT corrupt, and do compensate their employees appropriately.

        Look I’m not saying the system is anywhere near perfect. Obviously those living in the favelas are not going to see much from this, but that is a much bigger problem.

        • SanFran415 says:

          Millions?

          Visiting attendance for World Cups rarely breaks 500,000 and for Brazil it could be significantly less due in part to travel costs.

          This is Brazil. There are already huge tax increases and transportation cost increases to pay for the infrastructure outlays which were supposed to be privately funded. And instead the private funders just stole public money.

          Why do you think MILLIONS are protesting. That “upper class” stole BILLIONS of public dollars when they promised to pay for it themselves.

          Brazilian middle class and poor people are getting *&$*(#&$&*(@ by the World Cup.

        • Brett says:

          And these poor people giving up their domiciles go where, and with what assets? Tourism stimulates revenue, that’s simple economics, but the disparity of wealth and rampant corruption have to take precedence over getting a short term stimulus to the poor.

        • Brett says:

          And these poor people giving up their domiciles go where, and with what? Tourism stimulates revenue, that’s simple economics, but the disparity of wealth and rampant corruption have to take precedence over getting a short term stimulus to the poor.

          • Brad C says:

            You have no idea what you are talking about.

            Lots of middle class families in Brazil have country cottages they can go to or they come from smaller cities where they can stay with relatives.

          • elgringorico says:

            who said anything about poor people giving up their domiciles? it would be the middle class, the same people protesting, who would RENT their apartments.

            Show me one instance where poor people have been forcibly evicted from their homes.

        • bml says:

          Millions can sublet? Brazil’s tourist board is estimating 500,000 visitors for the World Cup. With the high crime, violence, horrible international access and insane costs that might be an optimistic number. If you look at the actual impact of tourism during World Cup and Olympic events the data shows no change in the number of tourists during these events.

    • Kosh says:

      Dude, the whole trickle down thing…yeah, it doesn’t work. Why? Because of…”Sure most money will go into the pockets of rich people…”

      That A LOT you mention is theoretical and never results into an amount that truely matters or makes significant impact.

      I am sure the people of Rio love their soccer but as is evident by these protests – I am sure they love other stuff too.

  8. Chris says:

    The sad thing most of the issues in Brazil are $$$ related right? Too bad FIFA doesn’t want to realize the USA can host this tournament with out having to build a single stadium or upgrade any infrastructure. Profitable World Cup in the USA is a piece of cake.

    • fischy says:

      Really, it takes more planning than that. As for infrastructure, it could be better, but we can manage.

    • AcidBurn says:

      I seem to remember a certain presentation where the US mentioned that they didn’t have to build a single stadium and guaranteed record revenues for a WC, and instead FIFA decided to send it to a country the size of Connecticut…but who could line their pockets right NOW!

      Cash moves everything around me, dollar dollar bill y’all.

  9. 2tone says:

    Blatter has told protesters to not “use Football to make their demands heard.” Yet Blatter and FIFA has used Football as a political tool for a long time.

  10. Jacknut says:

    Does this officially make us FIFA’s backup girlfriend?

  11. CSD says:

    Blatter thinks these silly democracies are ruining World Cups:

    FIFA president Sepp Blatter then told the audience that he was relieved that hosts Argentina won the 1978 World Cup, which was held under an oppressive military government.

    “I remember my first World Cup where I was directly involved was the one in Argentina and I would say I was happy Argentina won,” he said.

    “This was a kind of reconciliation of the public, of the people of Argentina, with the system, the political system, the military system at the time.

  12. jrxl says:

    WE ARE GOING TO…. here? WE ARE GOING TO HERE! WE ARE GOING, WE ARE GOING…

  13. CSD says:

    Less Democracy makes for great World Cups Apparently. I guess the lack of electricity for night games is stopping North Korea from getting one…

    link to reuters.com

  14. Pingunça says:

    #Braziltaglines 2014 is gonna be a riot!!

  15. MiamiAl says:

    Professional Commie Agitators. We have em too. Nothing to see here…Ignore them, they will go away…As someone who has been to a few Wold Cups, this wouldn’t change my mind about going…

    • zarathustra says:

      “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.”

    • bbstl says:

      I hope that you are joking. If not, you clearly know nothing about the political climate in Centra/South America, particularly Brazil.

  16. Brad C says:

    According to the NY Times: 67% of the people are protesting bus fare increases, 38% against corruption, 35% against politicians, 27% against better public transportation, 20% for more public safety, and 18% against police/gov’t repression.

    The point is that the protest are similar to the occupy movements; they lack a clear focus and leadership which indicates to me they will calm down and disperse after a little bit…

    I’m all for protesting but I think cooler heads will prevail once they realize how much money the WC and Olympics will inject into the Brazilian economy.

    • Brad C says:

      27% *for* better public transportation

    • zarathustra says:

      NY Times is a mouthpiece for Banksters

    • Michael says:

      The question is, how much of that money will the ordinary Brazilian see? Not to mention the people in favelas. These events tend to fatten the already-rich, at the expense of public spending whose benefits would be more broadly distributed.

      • zarathustra says:

        bravo! you nailed it.

      • Brad C says:

        the same thing would happen in the USA! some people own the businesses and take the risk of putting up colateral to open businesses, they then hire people and the economy benefits…

        capitalist is fair, you get what you deserve, but not equal, that’s communism and you should how that worked out..

        • Brad C says:

          *capitalism*

          • zarathustra says:

            Capitalism for profits and Socialism for losses.
            That is what your ilk practice.
            Blood suckers!

            • Columbuster says:

              Read a book.

              And no, Michael Moore movies don’t count.

              • Lalo says:

                Something by Ayn Rand perhaps? You wanna-be 1%ers really crack me up. Living in Mom and Dad’s basement talking your libertarian bs.

        • Brett says:

          It’s fair as long as you start out on the better side…There is very little upward mobility when the stratification is that wide and steep.

    • Brett says:

      You sound remarkably like a suit in a highrise looking down on the unwashed. “Their problems aren’t important and their lack of focus makes them weak and lacking in conviction.” Sweet Yeezus…

    • Mason says:

      Did anyone poll men in the street in Cairo, Algiers, or Tunis and ask them what their gripes were?

      I bet you would have found similar disparities.

  17. Clevelandfc says:

    How many fans may not go to thw world up now? II had thought about taking my son next summer, but now i don’t think so.

    • Brad C says:

      Give it a month, I bet they will flame out…

    • Todd C says:

      Exactly. I am second guessing my plans to go to Brazil for the World Cup. It was already dangerous enough, but to spend a lot of money and not know how the experience will be isn’t totally worth it. Could it turn out okay and be fun and safe, yes. But I’d rather go somewhere guaranteed to be safe and watch the games on TV. Brazil definitely can’t provide that. Sucks that FIFA is so corrupt that Russia and Qatar won’t be much better. I’m still baffled that Qatar was awarded a world cup. If that doesn’t define corruption and complete disregard for common sense (weather etc) than I don’t know what does.

      • Clyde Frog says:

        I am telling everyone to STAY WAY, STAY AWAY, STAY AWAY.

        Maybe then demand will decrease and prices will come down. Oh wait, did I just type that? Ignore that last comment please!

  18. SanFran415 says:

    Eight of the 10 stadiums built or renovated in Japan for the 2002 World Cup lose between $2 million and $6 million a year, the balance of which is picked up by Japanese taxpayers.

    This X 10 for what is going to happen to Brazil.

    The only World Cups that are remotely beneficial to the general public of a host nation are those held in nations with the existing infrastructure to host them. Period.

    • Brad C says:

      do you have a source that proves what you say about the cost to tax payers?

        • bryan says:

          cool article. thanks for sharing!

        • Mig says:

          Don’t ignore the fact that the Japanese themselves say that it costs money now because there was no plan for how to use the stadia afterwards. And between $2 and $6 million annual loss for 8 stadiums is frankly peanuts. No mention is made of the net benefit to the other two stadiums.

          This is a far more complicated formula than has been presented.

          And early indications seem to show that South Africa’s Cup will be a large net benefit.

          • bml says:

            Athens was paying $124M/year on 22 stadiums for the Olympics and 21 were unused in 2010. This might seem like “peanuts” but it adds up. I don’t know the costs of the South Africa stadiums, but it was reported that the five new stadiums built for their World Cup were a “maintenance problem” and loosing money.

    • Kosh says:

      + 1

      I know we want to spread and share the game with the world and everything but are we really at the point where we can do this? It’s a noble intention and it helps validate the true global value of the games (WC and Olympics) but just because a country has the money (Qatar) or appears to (Brazil, SA) is giving them the games harmful in the long run?

      I am not advocating having developed countries have it all the time (because it kills the global appeal and value) but there has to be a better way and more serious study during the selection process.

      • SanFran415 says:

        Giving them smaller tournaments might be the way to do that.

        But giving a world cup to a country that barely has fully functioning utilities outside the core of their capital cities is… greed.

  19. Pepe says:

    Ives – why were the posts questioning your sources for the potential World Cup move deleted? They made a really good point about how this is a huge deal and your claim doesn’t seem to have much to back it. It seems like a rather authoritarian move to try to make yourself from looking bad.

  20. Dennis says:

    Brazil was a dangerous country for (rich) foreigners before the protests. It does not seem to be getting better. If Brazil loses before the final, things could get ugly, but for example, FIFA did not cancel Egypt’s WCQ games despite riots and deaths at a domestic league game (The Egyptian government did cancel the domestic league and mandated playing in empty stadia for home WCQs and African Cup qualifiers. It is not clear what FIFA might have done had Egypt not acted. I do not think playing in empty stadia at the WC is a viable alternative.)

    We will know more in a couple weeks!

    • Brad C says:

      As someone who has been to Brazil 3 times, it’s only dangerous in certain parts and times, just like most countries with poverty and huge cities.

      Egypt was totally different; people trying to overthrow an authoritarian regime. Brazil is a democracy and among the better governed countries in South America. In Egypt they were protesting for their basic rights, in Brazil it’s bus fares. Not the same type of fight…

      • bbstl says:

        True. However, these protests could get big (bigger) and violet really quickly. What is happening is that under Lula and Rousseff the country made massive economic strides, and introduced many, many programs to help lessen some of the economic inequality in the country. Unfortunately, the bills for those programs are coming due. So you have a country with a 20-ish percent poverty rate and a slowing economy, paired with a World Cup/Olympic power grab, and the shit hits the fan over something small like a bus fare increase.

      • Mig says:

        Thank you Brad for the injection of sanity.

      • Lalo says:

        If you believe the people of Brasil are only protesting a modest increase in bus fairs, you are gravely mistaken my friend. They have had enough of the same thing the people of Egypt, Bahrain, Greece, Cyprus, Tunisia and many others have tired of – corruption, greed and brutality by the elites that make this world a nightmare for so many people.

      • Mason says:

        And the Turkish protests were about a municipal planning board’s decision…

    • Pingunça says:

      This whole comment is rubbish.. I lived in São Paulo for some time and found the place to be very civil. I must point out .. from my own experience many Brazilian themselves are more scared of other regions of their own country than any foreigner will ever be

  21. Travis says:

    I still dont think the WC gets moved, little that FIFA does makes me think they have any common sense at all. Even if the country were in full scale revolution they would probably still try to hold it. The only thing that makes FIFA listen is when they arent going to get paid, then they spring to action. Even with all this unrest there will still be enough demand for tickets.

  22. Excellency says:

    It actually seems quite realistic that the tournament is moved because the politicians themselves may demand it to take the pressure off. From the fiewpoint of FIFA, it would seem to me that stopping the confed cup is equivalent to demonstrating that the world cup could realistically be stopped as well.

    I see no problem holding the WC in the USA. All those tackle stadiums are sitting empty in the summer.

    Piece of cake.

    • Brett says:

      I doubt the politicians would be in favor of that. The mob appears toothless enough. The real pressure to move would come from the individual football federations from around the world. If they can’t feel safe in the environment, they can’t be forced to play there.

  23. zarathustra says:

    Yea, bring the WC to the US.
    Here in ChIraq (Chicago) we would throw a great party!
    Soon, the elites will have a hard time finding ANYWHERE safe to throw their silly parties.
    The masses have been pushed to the breaking point and are waking up!
    I would just as well watch some kids in the park play futbol.
    Futbol has become just another ring in the elites bread and circus.

  24. bryan says:

    so they’ll give it to us, then we’ll crash out of qualifying epically and become the first host nation to not be in the World Cup!

    • Seriously says:

      Host nations are automatically in…

      • bryan says:

        that went right over your head…

        obviously, if they move it, they can’t make Brazil go through qualifying at this point. meaning, Brazil will likely keep their automatic berth status and the US would still need to qualify.

        i was joking that if that happened, watch the US amazingly crash out of qualifying and miss out on the World Cup…which they suddenly are now hosting.

  25. Seriously says:

    Keep it up Brazil! Send the World Cup here!

  26. Scott e Dio93 says:

    People forget how tough life was 20 years ago, in Brazil. Now over 40 million are now middle-class, and 10 million upper-middle-class, in Today’s Brazil, go to Uruguay and Argentina see millions of Brazilians spend big time there.

  27. Columbuster says:

    It is very simple minded to just look at the gap between the rich and the poor and cry foul. I think I made some of the same kinds of foolish arguments posted above when I was in my teens. Sure capitalism makes the rich richer, but it also makes the poor richer as well. If you really care about poverty you would focus on the poor and not how much the “rich elite” have. There is only one way to help people escape poverty and that is opportunity.

    The WC and CC is an opportunity. If corrupt politicians or unethical people are getting in the way of that opportunity then let’s blame them and deal with that. But it is a fool who blames capitalism.

    And another thing…to say that the rich make all the money at these kind of events and have their parties while the poor are just their “maids and whores” is to denigrate the working classes and people who are maids, service workers, lawnmowers, cooks, and all the rest. These people are the backbone and real hero’s of any society. That argument shows that YOU are the elitist!

    • Columbuster says:

      Sorry zarathustra I misquoted you. You were denigrating “maids and hookers”.

    • elgringorico says:

      +’1. The people posting here are just spitting the normal catch phrases. I wonder if people like Brett and zarathustra have been to Brasil or even know one Brasileiro, or have read anything other than Che Guevara biographies.

      • Jojo says:

        Going to Brasil for a 3-day business trip and getting buggered by a tranny does not make you an expert on Brazilian society and politics.

  28. Yusef says:

    I am all for a World Cup in the USA and stand in solidarity with the people of Brasil, but cancelling the tournament may be counter-intuitive to spend all of that money on the stadiums and not get the economic benefits that come with having hundreds of thousands of people attend the tournament.

  29. dan says:

    u think they’d be happy to be having the world cup? SA was terrible too but they used the WCup to make it better there, brazilians are just protesting… enough 3rd world countires