Friday 30 January 2015

Brazil's inequality summed up in stark World Cup image

Mehreen Khan

Published 13/06/2014 | 15:16

Social media users share image first taken during last year's Confederations Cup showing host nation's 'two faces'

World Cup 2014 hosts Brazil may have got off to the perfect start in the tournament, but one image has bought into sharp relief the stark levels of inequality that blight the country.

Captioned 'the two faces of Brazil' or Las dos caras de Brasil in Spanish, the photograph posted on Twitter, shows Brazilian football fans throwing rubbish into a dustbin inhabited by a young woman.

The image has been shared widely since it was posted on Thursday evening. It was originally taken during the Confederation's Cup tournament held in Brazil last year.

Its re-emergence is further evidence of a backlash against the staging of World Cup among many ordinary Brazilians who are angry at the country's decision spend lavishly on the tournament when the government is being forced to make tough economic decisions.

Before the opening game in Sao Paulo, police used teargas and stun grenades as they clashed with around 200 protesters angry at government over-spending. Protests were seen across 10 Brazilian cities including Rio.

ITV's television studios in Rio's Copacabana beach were also pelted by rocks during last night's game.

An estimated £6.7 billion has been spent on hosting the World Cup in a country where millions of people live in slums and basic services such as healthcare are underfunded.

The build-up to the tournament has also been marred by construction delays and political unrest.

Attending Thursday night's victory against Croatia, Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff was jeered by fans who were watching the game at outdoor venues.

Protestors have also held banners attacking the sport's governing body, reading 'Fifa Go Home' and 'World Cup of corruption.'

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