Brazil is a sporting country. Football, volleyball, racing sports, and mixed martial arts are well developed here. There are many bright athletes in athletics and tennis. But many sectors are not properly developed. The reason is the lack of infrastructure, new human resources, and administrative management, as well as several related problems.
The problems of Brazilian sport
Brazil has many good sports schools. They carry on the tradition of their country’s great champions and teams. But some factors hinder the development of sports. Among them, the following are key:
- poor ecology;
- lack of funding;
- uneven distribution of sports facilities across the territory;
- inadequate support from government agencies;
- difficult epidemiological situation;
- low salaries;
- mistrust of the authorities;
- high crime rates.
Given the current problems of sports in Brazil, it is easy to understand why the country’s gifted athletes are outperformed by less talented athletes from the United States or Europe. To remedy the situation, the difficulties need to be examined in greater depth, and accelerated action needs to be taken.
Interestingly, in South America, as well as in India, horse racing is a popular sport. Gamblers often find horse racing tips India useful and use these tips in betting in other countries.
In 2016, when Brazil hosted the Olympics, the country was tested on many points by the IOC. One key factor was the state of the environment.
Rio de Janeiro, which hosted the main stages of the Olympics in key sports, is the country’s largest city. It is home to 15 million people, many living below the poverty line. This puts a strain on the region’s environment.
A study published in the Associated Press revealed extreme contamination of the bodies of water in Rio, the country’s sports capital. Levels of pathogenic bacteria are 1.6 million times higher there. This means that athletes risk becoming infected and dropping out of competitions if they participate in water sports in open territories.
Aquatic sports hampered by Brazil’s poor ecology include:
- swimming in open-air pools;
- professional diving, etc.
An example is the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. At that time, athletes of the above-mentioned disciplines had to take antibiotics for fear of being infected by bacteria from the local waters. They used protective suits and disinfected their entire bodies after training or competition.
Besides the polluted bodies of water, it is worth mentioning the deposits of rubbish. They are found everywhere, from the densely populated areas of Rio de Janeiro to the shallow streets of rural centers.
Poor ecology causes the spread of diseases that are not found in more developed countries. In addition, it interferes with world championships and local competitions.
Tourists noticing the bad conditions in Brazil tend to spend more time in hotel rooms than outdoors. This reduces the level of income that sporting events traditionally bring to the country.
A difficult epidemiological situation
Speaking of poor ecology, it is worth mentioning that Brazil has had little success in combating serious diseases. This was the case with the Zika virus, which was rampant during the Olympics. Because the country’s government did not guarantee 100% protection, 18 Olympians had to give up their dreams – the athletes did not make it to the competition.
For 8 years the IOC found no serious violations in terms of preventing the epidemiological situation in the country. However, everyone who traveled to the Olympic Games was warned about the possibility of contracting the said virus.
In 2019, the situation deteriorated again. The reason is the spread of the coronavirus. Brazil has become a country that has been significantly affected by COVID 2019. More than 682,000 people died and the number of those infected exceeded 18 million.
The reason for such a high number of fatalities is that authorities have not procured vaccines for a long time and have not provided residents with other means of protection against the virus.
National level problems
The development of the epidemic was to a large extent due to the specific policies of the country’s president. Contrary to recommendations from health ministers, the politician deemed distancing measures “unacceptable in the current economic climate”.
In June 2021, Brazil had the second-highest mortality rate in the world because of COVID 2019. But instead, the president advised sports ministers to hold all key championships without restrictions.
Jair Bolsonaro was going to hold the America’s Cup on Brazilian soil. But even the athletes themselves were against this decision because among them were dozens who had lost loved ones during the pandemic due to the lack of restrictive measures and proper treatment.
How this affected sport:
- criticism of the politician led to divisions;
- riots broke out among Brazilians who loved football but did not want to see the government pay more attention to it than to treatment for covid;
- vaccination rates among athletes increased – but only among football clubs, which at the time had 70% protection for their players.
COVID 2019 was the last major problem for Brazil and world sport as a whole. But apart from that, there are plenty of other shortcomings in the country.
Lack of funding
Brazil has been experiencing a protracted financial crisis since 2011. It is affecting all sectors of the country, including the development of sports. The lack of funding has led to the fact that in the 2014 FIFA World Cup and 2016 the Olympic Games, which should take place in Brazil, were almost canceled.
The reason was banal: the country simply did not have enough money to complete all the planned facilities in a quality and timely manner. At the time, in 2014, the president of the IFC published a post on his social network showing the unfinished infrastructure, wondering whether Brazil would be able to get key facilities in order a few days before the start of the competition.
The scandal was avoided. But not to the end. Many who visited the Olympics noted the following problems:
- Poor accommodation for the athletes. Minimal protection, “zero” service, uncomfortable room layout.
- Bad food. The local cuisine was specific. The choice of dishes was rather poor. That is why World Cup participants and Olympians refused Brazilian food.
- Poor infrastructure. The Australian team was offered a room with no water or electricity. The Italians also had wiring problems. The Americans had to stay on a separate boat for fear of the poor conditions in the hotel provided.
The above problems are only a part of the domestic difficulties that are reflected in the sporting success of local athletes.
Low level of trust in the country’s leadership
In Brazil, problems with sports start at high levels of government. An example is an anti-social action that led to mass demonstrations, the holding of championships during the pandemic, and the growth of discontent.
Sport has been affected by even greater cuts in funding and a lack of prospects for some disciplines. Yes, in Brazil there are key areas that the government supports at a national level. These are football and volleyball. The representatives of other sports have a harder time.
Because of the frequent demonstrations of Brazilians in various regions, the infrastructure suffers. This was the case before the World Cup and the Olympics when there were massive protests in the cities.
Public unrest shakes the current system. The result is even less money, especially for sports and cultural development.
Despite strong schools in football and volleyball, many players are not keen to stay in their small motherland. In Brazil, top athletes are paid around 10 times less than in the USA or Europe. Therefore, key players in top sports, such as Neymar, leave their country at the first opportunity.
In addition, the level of local leagues in some sports is inferior to European or American, even though the country’s national team tops the rankings. For example, when it comes to football. Wanting to improve, the best players are also leaving local clubs.
The sports infrastructure in Brazil is partly in place. Mainly for football and volleyball. But in most cases the number of stadiums and sports schools is insufficient.
On top of that, many sections remain fee-paying, and most low-income Brazilian families simply can’t afford it. So children choose disciplines in which they don’t have to invest to hone their skills, dreaming of becoming a second Neymar or Ghiba.