Futebol - The Football
The first ball arrived in the country with Charles William Miller, in 1894, a Brazilian born in São Paulo son of an English family. Like in many other countries, football (or soccer, according to US) was a result of the English influence and was initially restricted to the white and upper classes. Black and lower class people were only allowed to watch up until the 1920, when the sport became popular and became a part of the mass culture, especially after the professionalization in 1933.
During Getúlio Vargas' government, an effort was made so that football could be raised into the most significant element of national identification due to its power to gather people from all ages, genders, religions, classes and areas. The construction of Maracanã, planned to be the biggest sports arena of the world, and the 1950 World Cup are a Vargas’ legacy. Brazil's team first World Cup victory, in 1958, with Didi, Pelé, Garrincha and Bellini as the main stars, was the proof that the sport was becoming a favorite in the entire country.
Luckily for footballs lovers, there are many championships throughout the year happening in Brazil. The state championships usually start in January and are followed by Copa do Brasil (Brazilian Cup), the only national competition that includes teams from all states, that takes place in the first semester with no fixed date. The biggest championship is the Campeonato Brasileiro de Futebol, known as Brasileirão, and takes place between May and December.
During the year, a Brazilian local team can play around 80 matches, an average of one game every 4,5 days. The biggest matches, featuring teams in the 1st division, usually happen in rounds every Wednesday and Thursday in the evening or Saturday and Sunday in the afternoon.
The Brazilian national team is one of the main national teams in the world. Known by its yellow and green shirt, blue shorts and white socks, the colors of the Brazilian flag, the team is also called seleção canarinho as a reference to a Brazilian bird with the same coloring. It has won five World Cups, becoming the biggest winner in the history of that championship. It has also won eight American Cups and four Confederation Cups, but no golden medals at the Olympics Games.
In the Americas, the biggest competition are the Argentinean and the Uruguayan teams. Worldwide, the European teams of England, Italy, France, Germany, Netherlands and Spain – mainly due to past rivalry in past World Cup matches.
Currently Brazilian Football Team is ranked 2nd as per the FIFA website.
Woman's football team
Despite being considered to be one of the best national teams in the planet, Brazilian woman's football team has no voice in the country. Little is spoken in the grand media about the team's achievements and hardly ever broadcast games. Only a few clubs have any interest in developing woman's teams and rare championships take place nationally – an insignificant number of state and amateur ones, compared to the male league.
However, the woman's team has won gold medals in the 2003 and 2007 Olympic Games and silver in 2004 and 2008. Marta, playing in Sweden and acting as forward in the Brazilian national team, has been awarded the world's best football player 5 times in a row, a record amongst men and women, and in 2015 became the player who scored the most in the history of the Woman's Football World Cups with 15 goals and in the history of the Brazilian national team (including men and women) with 100 goals.
Man's football team
Amongst the great Brazilian football players, we could name:
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