As someone who doesn’t watch football—sorry, soccer—religiously or follow any teams, it’s been an interesting time having the World Cup constantly on my television. My boyfriend being, at the very least, a casual fan had me catching glimpses of the games being played. Now, I understand the game just fine and had ever since I was forced to play in middle school for P.E. class, but that doesn’t mean I understand the game being your life. Maybe that’s just because of my outlook on the game, but even though I don’t understand that aspect of football, I can understand what happened with the Brazil vs. Germany match.
Since this year’s World Cup is hosted in Brazil and the Brazilian spirit was in full swing by the time this match came upon us. The Brazilian Team had high hopes, since they had made it thus far into the Cup—if they won this match they only had one more and even if they had lost the last match, they still would have received second place. However, they were going up against Germany after losing two of their star players. Even I, a non-fan really, knew that they would have to give 200% to win in this match.
With Neymar, their star forward, out of the game with a fractured vertebra (ouch!) and Silva, their Captain and defender, out with a second yellow card, Brazil was going to be limping along against Germany. When the game kicked off it was immediately clear that they were not going to have it easy. Germany ended up winning the match with seven goals to Brazil’s one. But that isn’t what I really want to talk about.
What I want to talk about is the media coverage and the fan reactions during and after the Brazil vs. Germany match. You see, as a relative non-fan, I found the talk of “utter desolation” for Brazil a horrid way to term it. Yes, they were out for first or second. I understand that the World Cup is a you win the trophy or you’re pretty much forgotten kind of tournament, but it was out of place. Considering the fact that Germany played their best and didn’t just pass the ball around after they were clearly going to win the match, I think that Brazil should be quite pleased that they were matched against Germany. At least the Germans had the respect for the other team to keep playing it; they didn’t act as if it were a “cakewalk”.
Another way to look at the match is that you learn more from losses than you do from victories. What could Brazil have learned from this match? That their entire team isn’t made up of two people. Yes, they should have had a harder time competing with two of their better players out, but they’re all good players and they should have been able to cover for the two missing. That’s what makes a good team, a winning team. It’s a fact that’s true of any team sport.
After all of that I kept hearing one thing clearly in the media: that Germany was a villain for stealing a win from Brazil. For kicking them when they were down. I’ve been pretty disgusted with that as well, as it’s not respectful and certainly not a show of good sportsmanship.
I’m sorry if your chosen team was Brazil, but Germany was the better team at that point in time. If Brazil had their two stars back in the game? Who knows, honestly, but in this case they weren’t there and their team didn’t make it to the finals. They still have a shot at third place, however, and frankly I think that’s pretty good, considering.