The End

The line that greeted us on Copacabana beach stretched so far that we didn't even bother finding the end. Instead we nestled ourselves in front of the second screen. The crowd was still thin – but overwhelmingly Argentinian. A lone German stood proudly behind us in his speedos, a German flag fluttering gently beside him.... Continue Reading →


 On the penultimate day of the World Cup we traveled to Brasilia for the third/fourth place play-off, between Brazil and Holland. Twelve hours in Brazil's capital, of which I had high hopes. Brasilia is unfortunately an unrelentingly boring city. Unless you have a particular interest in tarmac and fly-overs – or you get a real... Continue Reading →

Dream No More

Goal after goal. After goal. After goal. The Germans bellowed until their throats cracked. The Brazilians carried an empty vacant look. A look of complete astonishment – and also near complete pain. The rain hammered down around us. Brazil's dreams had been obliterated in one astonishing half of football. Our setting for the ritual sacrifice... Continue Reading →

Beauty and the Beast

The crowd held its breath. The chants of 'Julio Cesar' had died down. The Chilean, Gonzalo Jara, placed the ball on the penalty spot – stamping down on the turf before walking a few yards back – turning, and exhaling. He had to score. Thousands of Brazilians packed into Rua Alzira Brandão held their breath.... Continue Reading →

The Frog and The Lion

This is a story of two halves. One half includes wonderful moments, exquisite skills and the odd hero or two. The other half includes none of these. This is the story of England and France. Born in London to a French mother, I've always felt somewhere in the middle. I've lived in England for the... Continue Reading →

Rua Alzira Brandão

We heard it before we could see it. The piercing horns, the banging drums – a steady rumble – the sounds of Brazilians doing what Brazilian seem to do best – partying - and frenzied support of their national football team. We turned the corner and were greeted by an arch across the road. Through... Continue Reading →


 Eleven games - and the goals are pouring in. Holders Spain fell spectacularly to the thunderous Dutch. The Fan Fest exploding in orange admiration. Plucky Costa Rice took down lazy Uruguay, the French survived what can only be described as murderous football from the Hondurans and a little man named Messi finally arrived. I can't... Continue Reading →

The Party Begins

 The waiting was over. Through demonstration, tear gas, and angry murals – Brazil had wobbled unsteadily towards the World Cup – but it was time. 12th June 2014. Brazil vs Croatia. Fans poured into the Fifa Fan Fest which sits towards the top of Copacabana beach. We were greeted by a nerve testing line. Thousands... Continue Reading →

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