Forums / The footytube Blog
Order: Newest / Oldest
Brazil Needs The World Cup More Than Ever
[account-removed] 4 years ago
I do not think Brasil need the World Cup right now. They need more honest police officers. I have seen documentaries on Brasil, the news headlines: Murders soar in Brazil city as police strike, Rio gangs down police helicopter and so forth.
Maybe make Brasil safer, then fans will attend football games more. No offence CarlCon, Do a little more investigating. There always more to a story
CarlCon (DC United) 4 years ago
For a country known for “samba football”, and producing greats like Pele, Ronaldo, and Ronaldinho, Brazil surprisingly appears to be struggling with spectator numbers.

With attendances falling by the year, the Brazilian leagues now have lower attendances than the likes of China and USA. Aging stadiums, television channels covering every game, a perceived lack of respect towards fans, and questionable policing at games are just some of the various problems facing Brazilian football authorities who are trying to get Brazil hyped up for the World Cup in 2014.

Having seen average attendances drop by 8% this year throughout the Brazilian first division to only 13,000, Brazilians would be quick to note that those averages are actually skewed by the few bigger clubs like Corinthians and Gremio. The average attendance outside these clubs is closer to 8,000, with Santos, the home of the well-revered Neymar, only seeing an average of 7,700 last season.

Then we find smaller clubs like Atlético GO and Portuguesa who are lucky to get 4,000 fans into their stadiums on matchday.

Brazil has drastically fallen behind European nations, as well as being overtaken by the United States, China, and Japan. The German and English second divisions now boast higher attendances than the Brazilian first division.

What are the Brazilians actually doing to fix this?

In Recife, fans of the city's three big teams get tickets in return for requesting invoices for purchases in stores. The initiative is designed to raise tax revenues by ensuring businesses record transactions.

Under the program, first division teams Sport and Nautico get 8,000 tickets for each home game paid for by the state government. The 20,000 tickets given to third division Santa Cruz have helped it to become one of the best-supported clubs in the country.

"It helps you guarantee a critical mass of people in the stadium," said Sport's president Gustavo Dubeux. "Without it our crowds would be 25 percent less than they are. It's very important to us."

The idea of season ticketing has never really taken off in Brazil, but most clubs do offer membership plans that offer discounts and priority booking. Internacional have 110,000 fans signed up to their membership program, which is more than even Real Madrid.

Another problem the Brazilian leagues face is ticket pricing. Over the last 15 years, ticket prices have increased exponentially, excluding many fans from poorer areas. Considering Brazil’s famous history of producing superstars from these poorer areas, it can be very disheartening for young fans to not be able to attend the sport they love, and therefore creates fears that Brazil’s amazing record of producing talent may be in danger.

As recent as 10 years ago, you could get tickets for under €1 at the legendary Maracana stadium for one of the many local derbies held there. Today, the average ticket is 10 times that, and top clubs now charge up to €80 for tickets.

Price reductions have been shown to work. For example, when Sao Paulo reduced ticket prices for certain parts of their stadium by 66%, crowds in those areas went from 300 to 7,000.

Security and comfort is another problem area. Old decrepit stadiums and violence amongst rival fans keep away many who either fear for their safety, or simply don’t feel comfortable in stadiums that appear so run down.

These are prime reasons why Brazilians have turned to leaving their stadiums empty and are instead choosing to sit at home and watch on TV. The price of one ticket to a Corinthians game could pay for a pay-per-view subscription in Brazil.

Alessandro Maluf, product manager of a cable firm claims:

"Many people are scared to take their family to stadiums and they see pay per view as a safer way to see their team... It is not pay per view that stops Brazil being number one on that table, that has more to do with security, how you are treated, infrastructure."

It is hoped that the 2014 World Cup will help get Brazil back to its roots, and develop a better relationship with its regular fans. 12 upgraded, refurbished, or new arenas are scheduled to be open by the time the World Cup arrives, which Brazilian authorities hope will bring a new feeling of comfort and security amongst fans.

World Cup Fever is set to be a well needed cure for the sense of disenfranchisement that Brazilians feel, but only if the authorities get it right. The next two years will decide a lot about the future of Brazilian football.

This blog does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of footytube or its partners.

Kick4Life - changing lives through football