The friction between the Brazilian government and FIFA’s secretary-general Jerome Valcke escalates. FIFA has become very irritated at the Brazilian Congress because of their holdup on passing a key bill regulating the World Cup, including a law that would invalidate a ban on the sale of alcohol at the games during the World Cup. Another conflict between Brazil and FIFA is over a special discount price for game tickets that Brazil offers for students and the elderly. The Brazilian politicians want to protect this law during the World Cup and FIFA is not happy about this. There has also been a lot of concern and criticism from FIFA over the delays on the stadium construction and over the country’s infrastructure.
On Valcke’s recent visit to Brazil he insulted the government officials when he told them they needed to push themselves and kick themselves in the rear! He stated this in a very vulgar way which was very offensive to the Brazilian people. Sports Minister Aldo Rebelo declared, “We have always had a cordial attitude towards everyone from FIFA. We can’t accept such an offensive comment. He can’t say something like that about a country. It’s unacceptable!” Because of this recent rift the Brazilian sports minister sent a letter to Sepp Blatter the president of FIFA stating that they are not willing to deal with Valcke anymore. They asked for FIFA to substitute him for someone else.
The president of the Brazilian Soccer Federation Ricardo Teixeira issued a statement last Saturday about the latest scuffle over the World Cup in Brazil. Ricardo defended Brazil’s right to self-government without interference from outside but also empathized with FIFA’s concerns and called it legitimate. Ricardo also pleaded for FIFA to have more respect for Brazil and assured them that Brazil will do their job to be prepared for this great event. This is his statement, “The entity can rest assured that Brazil and its people have the competence and the dignity to organize an impeccable and unforgettable World Cup!”
Jerome Valcke considered Rebelo’s request of not wanting to work with him anymore very childish. He also defended himself by saying that he shouldn’t be blamed for nothing happening over a five year period. He also minimized his comment by saying that he only said that things are not working out well and that he was only speaking the truth. Valcke said that he plans to travel to Brazil as scheduled in about a week but Sports Minister Rebelo said that the county would not welcome him.
Just as the plot in this novel thickened there was a major breakthrough today. The president of FIFA apologized to the Brazilian government and the president Dilma Rousseff for Valcke’s remarks. He also plans to go to Brazil next week to meet with the president and Rebelo as a peace offering. He then paid tribute to Brazil by saying, “We have a common goal, the organization of an extraordinary World Cup in the land of football, in the land of champions. Brazil deserves to host the World Cup and the entire world is looking forward to it.” Just hours after the president’s apology the Brazilian congress approved the key bill needed for the organization of the World Cup.
Valcke also offered an apology to Brazil and claimed that his comment was interpreted incorrectly. Apparently the phrase he used about kicking themselves in the rear is a French slang meaning “to pick up the pace.”
I always like when a novel has a good ending! It looks like this one will also! I have faith that Brazil has the competence and dignity to organize the World Cup and it will be an unforgettable event! Don’t miss out!
Brought to you by: World Cup Brazil 2014