So the first day began with scattered protests. People so proud of what they are doing they feel the need to wear masks. People so outraged at the lack of money for education and hospitals they decide the best thing to do is to burn telephone boxes and sign posts that the council is going to have to replace using more of its scarce resources.
Most Brazilians you speak too are not particularly happy about paying a quarter of their salary in tax and then having to pay extra for private schools and healthcare but the general consensus is that the decision to host the World Cup cannot be reversed and that the best place to voice their discontent is in the polling booths later in the year. This image posted to facebook sums it up:
President Dilma decided not to make a speech at the game having been booed last year at the opening game of the Confederations Cup. Even a brief appearance on the stadium monitors brought derisive chants. According to Brazilian public opinion pollsters Datafolha, the majority of the Brazilian public are, as they always have been, in favour of the World Cup.
Also, despite all the noise, President Dilma is still the most popular presidential candidate and, if history can be believed to repeat itself, a Brazilian victory in the World Cup would be very good news for a Dilma re-election.
One of the major gripes of the Brazilians is the amount of corruption that still exists in the system but, after last nights game, and after the questionable officiating in the Mexico v Cameroon game going on at the moment, conversation is moving to corruption of another kind. Brazilians completely accept that Fred’s dive last night was not a penalty but, just as no-one really minded the dubious penalty Michael Owen was awarded against Argentina in Japan in 2002, no-one is really complaining.
The first significant event of the match however was Marcelo who was unable to steer the Hull City striker, Jelavic’s, powerful back-heel away from the goal. Within minutes social media had cranked into action.
But’s not possible to end this post without mentioning the tremendous opening ceremony which even Brazil’s own press described as scoring the first goal against the World Cup. Here’s a selection of twitter comments about the spectacle and an image doing the rounds ion Facebook comparing Brazilian singer Claudia Leite to popular children’s cartoon Galinha Pintadinha: