Before the vital Group E clash against Costa Rica, Brazilian fans were filled with mixed emotions during their journey to Saint Petersburg, just besides the Finnish Gulf. Most of them were joyously cheering their team and mocking their noisy neighbour Argentina, chanting verses following the shambolic performance by Lionel Messi and Co in the 2018 Fifa World Cup.
The metro station was full of Brazilian fans as this was the best way to get closer to the stadium. And on their way to the stadium, the fans, wearing their famous yellow jersey, were joined by some Moroccan fans. They chanted a few lines in Portuguese -
“O Di María, o Mascherano,
“O Messi tchau, Messi tchau, Messi tchau, tchau, tchau, tchau,
“E o argentino está chorando,
“Porque essa Copa eu vou ganhar”
When queried what this particular word “tchau” means, one of them, Yamura Newton, a Japan-born football fan who now lives in Sao Paolo, replied, “goodbye”. He helped us understand the whole verse.
“The Di Maria, The Mascherano, Messi bye, Messi bye, Messi bye, bye, bye. And the Argentine is crying and this Cup I'm going to win!” he translated.
There were many other songs being chanted by the crowd. One of them was –
“Mil gols, mil gols, mil gols, mil gols, mil gols, só Pelé, só Pelééé Maradona cheirador”
When asked the meaning of “cheirador”, Brazilian Radio journalist Marco Bello showed us with gestures that it means “scent”, being referred to Diego Maradona in the verse. And the first part says Pele has thousands of goals to his credit.
The rivalry does not end there. They were also singing heartily, telling Argentina to go out of Latin America and join the North. But everything was happening in a sporting fashion.
There were also fans who were concerned about Brazil’s performance. They were keeping their feet on the ground before the game against Los Ticos. There won’t be any scope for any margin of error for the Selecao, especially after the gloomy performance in their opening Group E game against Switzerland.
Adriano, hailing from Rio de Janeiro, came here with his wife. He was showing us a banner displaying photos of Brazil’s five World Cup-winning teams. While mentioning that the sixth one is coming, he said, “We did not play well in the first game. I know this is not an easy one. There are no big teams. But I hope this time Tite will do right.”
Whatever happens on the field, the rivalry between these two Latin American nations throughout the world only serves to increase the beauty of the game of football.