Crackle of the noise and deep rumblings were much familiar and rich on Saturday in Salvador. Though, there was something not quite the same.
Around 48 hours before, military police surrounded Arena Fonte Nova as protests raged in the city. Sound bombs were fired and tear gas was thrown, as more than 30,000 people were out in streets expressing anger over the situation that they thought had spiraled out uncontrollably.
On Saturday, the same noises were heard in Salvador streets but at this occasion, this happened to be expression of happiness and not for the lookout for justice.
The national team of Brazil was heading towards victory against Italy and, at least for some short time, country got united. Explosion of fireworks into evening air surrounding stadium after every 4 goals, they looked like they were lingering for longer after free-kick by Neymar which had the night all illuminated.
In the current situation, Selecao is one issue which Brazil could agree. They tend to be unifying presence and ray of hope for population that’s angry with the leadership it has. Dani Alves, right-back, told that they didn’t feel any increased pressure due to that.
He said that national team was nation’s source of joy and football brought people together and gave them hope.National anthem stays to be outlet for passion and fervor which has Brazil enveloped during the previous ten days. When Brazil did play Mexico last week in Fortaleza, singing before match versus Italy was one special moment and which roused the national pride as well as moved players visibly.
Words mention equality assurance and echoing cry of heroic people, representing feelings of the ones peacefully protesting in streets. After Neymar left field about twenty minutes before end, crowd got up as one and chanted in their language that they were Brazilians and proud to be that.
Some small protests did take place on Saturday in Salvadore but city’s mood was that of celebration during the hours that followed the game. The Sao Joao festival in Bahia is going on at the moment. In Pelourinho, the central town square was full of noise and color. Many people were dancing to the Forro music, wearing yellow of Selecao. Country had halted to look at them though this happened to be the party which followed.
Luis Felipe Scolari, the Brazilian coach said that everyone wanted justice to prevail in their country and that he hoped things would change and their country would be a better one in a couple of years, but that would not happen tomorrow or today.
What Are These Protests For?
Apparently, it started due to little increase in fares of bus that mushroomed into loads of complaints, including the corruption as well as less investment in the social services than Olympics and World Cup.
One month back, Scolari’s side happened to be the topic that gave rise to controversy along with public disappointment. Many thought the team to be mercenaries who grabbed money, many of whom played in Europe around 5000miles away and many they saw only when they did appear in Brazil’s yellow colour.
But 4 victories have managed to change all that.
The nation now listens when Thiago Silva, the captain, or David Luiz say that they favour the protests. Peaceful activists get strength from the words they say, inspired by the faith they have in all that’s being protested for – Brazil based on equality and better Brazil.
A Bahian of 32 years, Paulo Riccardo, told that he was quite encouraged by that compassion in players and that was what helped in closing gap between Selecao and people. He said that they were quite rich and didn’t have the money, though they all were facing same issues like Brazilians.
Protests haven’t stopped yet. There were aggressive clashes at Belo Horizonte on Saturday, where Brazil had to play on Wednesday the semi-final.
Brazil’s success on this field can’t make the country get rid of the problems it has. Though, as they proceed on to progressing through the tournament, there’s this feeling that momentum surely is building up behind them. When the final whistle was blown, there came the singing in Arena Fonte Nova, “champion is back”
So, national team cannot dare to disappoint Brazilians.