The Price of the World Cup

2014, Sports  -  29 min Leave a Comment
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Brazil is the home ground of football, the place where football isn't just a game but a lifestyle. In June, Brazil will be invaded by hundreds of thousands football enthusiasts when the World Cup, the biggest sporting event in the world, will be held in twelve cities throughout the country. The final will be in Rio de Janeiro.

According to the NGOs, around 200,000 people are expected to be forcibly removed because of World Cup related constructions. Amnesty International clearly identified huge problems in terms of the way people were evicted, not consulted and not properly compensated. The priority was not there... the logic behind all this was the logic of profit and money.

In the north of Brazil, the city of Fortaleza will host six world cup games. 3 million inhabitants live in the city known as one of the most beautiful beach areas in the world. Tens of thousands of tourists from both Brazil and Europe go there to discover the area that for some is paradise on earth. But the city has a dark side. It's the fifth most unequal city in the world and for the people at the bottom of the society it's far from holiday heaven.

7% of the Fortaleza's wealthiest own 1/4 of the city's riches while millions live on a bare minimum. In Brazil the official number of street children is 24,000 but the actual number is much higher. To put things into perspective, the state of Ceara, where Fortaleza is located, has invested more than 110 million euros in the rebuilding of the World Cup stadium Castelao. This amount is roughly the same as the amount the state has invested in public schools in the last four years combined.

The organizations that help vulnerable children in Fortaleza are also feeling the pressure from the World Cup economy. Last year two organizations closed down because they did not have the means to take care of the children without financial support. One was a much acknowledged organization having existed for 20 years. Life in Fortaleza is not only rough, it's also dangerous. It is ranked as the 7th most violent city in the world with a murder rate of 73 killings per 100,000 inhabitants and it's the most dangerous World Cup city in history.

FIFA, The Brazilian Ministry of Sports, The Mayor of Rio de Janeiro and the Secretary of Security in Rio de Janeiro and Fortaleza did not wish to participate in this documentary.