Clint Dempsey´s gol de barriga against Portugal sent me into fits of belly slapping. It may be the most famous goal of its kind since Renato Gaucho´s 1995 tally that won the Campeonato Carioca for Fluminense. As I was pounding out a batucada on my stomach it came to me that the bacchanal of the Copa is all about the gol de barriga.
Mysterious circumstances landed me in one of the hospitality suites for the Belgium x Russia match. In order to get there I had to pass through four levels of Military Police, two levels of ticket checkers, one turnstile, and then a credentialing center where I was given a multi-colored wristband that identified my place in the consumption circus.
Once the three business-attired, very thin, very attractive multi-lingual Brazilian women had kitted me out and opened the door to the consumption zone, I was met by the leveled gaze of three very dark, very plump, very unhealthy looking women who were standing in the foyer to the handicapped bathroom. Their dark crimson uniforms said more than they ever would about their position in the hierarchy. Between them and me was a table heaped with salads and deserts. The open bar offered champers, wine, gin and tonic, beer, whisky, vodka, capirinhas. Russians, Belgians, Brazilians were going back and forth to the buffet as the noise of the crowd built outside.
The hospitality sector of the Xaracanã was not close to full when the game started, nor would it be for the match as a whole. Yet the official attendance figures tell a different story. The emptiness of the stands is a reflection of the corporatization of the event as a whole. Mutli-nationals buy up these packages through MATCH and then give tickets as gifts to clients or friends. The major purchasers of these packages in Brazil are the civil construction firms that have made billions through over-priced stadiums and infrastructure for the World Cup.
Here´s the flow: Civil construction firms finance election campaigns. The World Cup projects are hastily proposed in back room agreements between government officials and the civil construction firms. Brazilian taxpayers finance multi-billion real projects that are contracted to the civil construction firms. These firms then spend millions on MATCH hospitality packages. Employees go to the hospitality suites to fill their bellies in the same way that their companies have filled their coffers with public money. Cheap labor increases MATCH´s profits in the same way that slave labor enriches Odebrecht in Angola. Belly size increases while the poor stare hungrily at the banquet table.
This is why it is so easy to score a gol de barriga in Brazil.
2014 World Cup Rio de Janeiro Maracanã FIFA 2016 Olympics 2016 Summer Olympics Eduardo Paes CBF Copa do Mundo 2014 Rio de Janeiro Olympics Ricardo Texeira World Cup 2014 2010 World Cup Vasco da Gama White Elephants mega-events APO UPP BRT Brazil football Flamengo Lula Orlando Silva violence ANT Aldeia Maracana Carlos Nuzman Dilma Eike Batista Rio 2016 Sergio Cabral 2007 Pan American Games Campeonato Carioca IOC Jerome Valcke Novo Maracanã BOPE BRASIL 2016 Brasil 2014 Corruption Engenhao Joao Havelange Maracana Policia Militar Vila Autódromo stadiums Aldo Rebelo Botafogo Henrique Meirelles Medida Provisoria Metro Revolta do Vinagre Sao Paulo Sepp Blatter World Cup 2010 forced removal Carnaval Elefantes Brancos Fechadao Marcia Lins Minerao Morumbi Odebrecht Porto Maravilha Rio+20 Romario Security Walls South Africa South Africa 2010 TCU Transoeste protests public money public transportation slavery transparency x-Maracana Andrew Jennings Argentina Audiencia Publica Barcelona Brazil Carvalho Hosken Comitê Popular Confederatons Cup Copa do Brasil 2010 Cost overruns Crisis of Capital Accumulation EMOP FERJ Favela do Metro Fluminense Fluminese Fonte Novo IMX Jose Marin Leonel Messi London 2012 Marcelo Freixo Maré Museu do Indio Olympic Delivery Authority Perimetral Rocinha Soccerex Transcarioca bicycles consumer society debt idiocy militarization transportation 1995 Rugby World Cup 2004 Olympics 2015 Copa America Banco Imobiliario Barcas SA Belo Horizonte Bom Senso F.C. Brasilerao CDURP CONMEBOL Champions League. Mourinho Complexo do Alemão Copa Libertadores Cupula dos Povos ESPN England FiFA Fan Fest Istanbul 2020 Jogos Militares John Carioca Kaka Manaus McDonald's Obama Olympic Village PPP Paralympics Providencia Recife Russia Salvador Soccer City Taksim Square Tatu-bola Urban Social Forum Vidigal Vila Olimpica War World Cup Xaracana cities corrupcao drugs estadios football frangueiro futebol mafia planejamento urbano police repression porn privitization reforms shock doctrine taxes 201 2010 Elections 2010 Vancouver Olypmics 2013 2018 World Cup 2030 Argentina / Uruguay ABRAJI AGENCO ANPUR ANT-SP Amazonia Ancelmo Gois Andrade Gutierrez Anthony Garotinho Arena Amazonia Arena Pernambucana Athens Atlético Paranaense Avenida das Americas BID Barra de Tijuca Blatter Brasil x Cote d'Iviore Brasileirão 2013 Brasilia Brasilierao Bruno Souza Bus fares COB COI COMLURB CPI CPO Cabral Caixa Economica Canal do Anil Cantagalo Celio de Barros Cesar Maia Chapeu Mangueira Chile 2015 Choque do Ordem Cidade da Copa Class One Powerboat Racing Clint Dempsey Comite Companhia das Docas Copa do Brasil Corinthians Cuiabá Curitiba Dave Zrin David Harvey Der Spiegel Eastwood Edge of Sports Escola Friendenrich Expo Estadio Expo Urbano FGV Fonte Nova Gamboa Garotinho Geostadia Ghana Globo Greek Debt Crisis Greek Olympics HBO Hipoptopoma IMG IPHAN ISL Iniesta Internatinal Football Arena Invictus Istanbul Itaquerao Jacque Rogge Jefferson John Coates Jose Beltrame Julio Grondona Julio Lopes Julio de Lamare Knights Templar Korea Lei Geral da Copa MAR MEX Manchester United Mangabeira Unger Maracanã. Soccerex Marina da Gloria Mexico Milton Santos Molotov Cocktail Mr.Balls Neymar Nicholas Leoz Nilton Santos Olympic Flag Olympic Park Project Oscar Niemeyer Pacaembu Pan American Games Parque Olimpico Pernambuco Plano Popular Plano Popular do Maracana Plano Popular do Maracanã Play the Game Pope Porto Alegre Porto Olimpico Porto Seguro Portuguesa Praca Tiradentes Preview Projeto Morrinho Putin Qatar Quatar 2022 RSA Realengo Regis Fichtner Roberto Dinamite Russia 2018 SETRANS SMH Santa Teresa Santos Sao Raimundo Sargento Pepper Security Cameras Smart City Sochi 2014 South Korea Stormtroopers São Januário São Paulo Teargas Templars Tokyo 2020 Tropa do Elite II Turkey UFRJ/IPPUR URU USA USA! Unidos da Tijuca United States government Urban Age Conference VVIP Via Binário Victory Team Vila Autodromo Vila Cruzeiro Vila do Pan Vilvadao Vivaldao Volta Alice Wasteland Workers' Party World Cup 2018 Xavi apartments atrazos attendance figures barrier beer bio-fuels bonde civil society comite popular copa sudamericana crack crime dengue dictatorship estádios favelalógica feira livre fiador flooding freedom of information furos geral graffiti guarda municipal host city agreement identity infrastructure ipanema istoe labor rape riots schedule school shooting security segregation social movements stadium state of exception supervia tear gas ticket prices torcidas organizadas tourism traffic tragedy trash trem-bala velodromo wikileaks xingar