When I think of going to a sports game, usually hockey since I hail from Toronto (no comments on the current status of the Leafs, insert “meh face” here), I think of fans cheering their teams on till their faces are beet red, the bellowing cries of the announcers and most importantly, the beer. For me, one of the joys of seeing a sports game in person is the opportunity to feel up close and personal with your team while yelling snide remarks at the opposition with an icy cold beer fit snuggly in the palm of your hand. So, imagine my dismay when I found out that Brazil, like several other countries, bans alcoholic beverages from being served at their stadiums. This means that the 2014 World Cup could potentially be void of a drop of brew.
Sad? Yes, but Brazil offers a very good reason for the ban. In 2003 football matches in Brazil were banned from serving alcohol in an attempt to stop violence among rivaling fans. However, BBC reports that the attempt has had little impact. This is most likely due to attendees countering the restriction by spending more time drinking before and after games from vendors outside the stadium.
However, Fifa General Secretary Jerome Valcke is determined to change this. He expressed his outrage to BBC saying, “Alcoholic drinks are part of the Fifa World Cup, so we’re going to have them. Excuse me if I sound a bit arrogant but that’s something we won’t negotiate. The fact that we have the right to sell beer has to be a part of the law.” Feisty that one.
Of course, the fact that Anheuser-Busch InBev of Budwesier is a major Fifa sponsor might have something to do with Fifa’s relentless insistence for a beer friendly stadium.
What do you think? Brazil’s country, their laws? Or should an exception be made to ensure the morale of the World Cup?
Your Favorite Brew Gal,
(photo via Robert Pesotski)