With the Seleção storming their way through the 2010 FIFA World Cup™, fans and players alike are excited by the prospect of the 2014 tournament to be hosted in Brazil.
In the build up to the showdown between Brazil and Chile at Ellis Park on Monday night, Brazil fans came out in their droves to cheer their team to a win and a Quarter Final spot against the Netherlands in Nelson Mandela Bay stadium on Friday.
“We have been here since the start,” said Mauricio Conti, a fan following his team around South Africa. “We have enjoyed ourselves here very much. South Africa is an amazing country and very beautiful.”
Conti is one of many fans who is experiencing this tournament as a precursor to the 2014 FIFA World Cup to be hosted in Brazil. “We are now very excited for 2014, we hope it will be a big party like it has been here in South Africa. We are preparing for it and we want to show the world, like South Africa has, that we can host a great tournament.”
The Brazilian fans are hoping their side can win the trophy in South Africa, giving their own tournament an added boost. “We are extremely excited for a win,” said Conti. “If we can take the trophy for the sixth time, and then again in Brazil, it will be too much.”
As the fans geared up for the game at Ellis Park, dressed in their costumes and dancing to their football anthems, there was a sense of victory in the air.
“We have had a good tournament, but we as Brazil fans always expect a lot from our team,” said Wendel Rios, a veteran of four FIFA World Cups. “We have the biggest soccer culture in the world and long history with this tournament, it would be great to win the first one in Africa.”
As South Africans dressed in the blue, yellow and green of Brazil streamed past, Rios commented on how impressed he has been by the local fans and how they have got behind his team. “The fans are great, their support for other teams is very good. I hope they will be joining us in Brazil for our World Cup. There is much African influence in Brazil, with a lot of African heritage. South Africans will be very welcome there.”
“With all the cultures in Brazil, the mixture of people and our passion for football, 2014 will be a great tournament. We want to show the world what we can do,” Rios added.
As an ardent football fan, Rios is excited by some of the exports that will be changing the tournament when it arrives in his home. “The vuvuzela is amazing, the sound in the stadiums is so huge, it has revolutionised football. We will have it in Brazil.”
For many Brazilian fans, seeing what South Africa has achieved is an inspiring and motivating factor for 2014. “We are prepared and excited, but South Africa has really raised the bar and done a good job. This means we must also do well to show the world what we are capable of,” said visiting fan, Lorema Bodelho.