Thursday, June 13, 2013
Estádio Nacional Mané Garrincha - World Cup 2014 Venue
With bent legs and the air of a man playing simply for the joy of playing, Manuel Francisco dos Santos - called a wren, or garrincha by his big sister - is the mazy dribbling embodiment of diversity over conformity, of the individual over the team, of what Brazilians call futebol arte.
Following Garrincha's retirement the CBF named the Estadio Nacional in Brasilia after him and, out of respect to the nation's most Brazilian of players, hung the goal nets from Brazilian L-supports.
However the old stadium has been replaced by a shiny new one for the 2014 World Cup, and the Brazilian L-supports have disappointingly been replaced by box-nets.
The famous Brazilian playwright Nelson Rodrigues wrote, "He is considered a retard but Garrincha proved in the (1958) World Cup that we are the retarded ones - because we think, we rationalise."
Yet no thought has gone into junking Brazilian heritage by installing uniform box-nets in the stadium named after Brazil's most diverse player and there's no rational reason Brazil can't celebrate it's own World Cup between goal nets suspended in the traditional Brazilian way.