Brazil row over topless fan ban in Maracana stadium

 
Brazil fans in Rio's Maracana stadium A ban on standing while watching matches is one of the changes proposed

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Controversial new plans which include a ban of shirtless and standing fans at Rio de Janeiro's Maracana stadium are causing outcry in Brazil.

Percussion instruments and flag poles traditionally used by organised fan groups could also be banned, says the stadium's new administration.

Critics are calling the plans "colonisation" and "gentrification" measures after the $450m modernisation.

Maracana has been renewed to host the final match of next year's World Cup.

The plans were announced by the president of the stadium's consortium, Joao Borba.

"We will talk to the clubs aiming a change of habits. I'm referring to bamboos [used as flag poles], bass drums, watching the matches standing. We do not even have room for the bamboos," Mr Borba told Rio's newspaper Extra.

'War against people'

The changes are meant to safeguard the comfort, security and accessibility of the fans, he explained.

Brazil fans celebrates at Rio's Maracana Brazil fans celebrates at Rio's Maracana

But in a city where walking around wearing only shorts and flipflops is as common a men's outfit as suit and tie, many do not believe the changes can be implemented.

Fans used blogs and social media to vent their anger at the plan.

"In the new Maracana, icon of a football undergoing transformation, a war has been declared against people," blogger David Butter wrote under the title "The colonisation of Maracana".

Hours after the announcement, users on Twitter were largely critical of the plans.

Another blogger saw an attempt of gentrifying football behind the proposals.

"So, away from the people, with expensive tickets and surroundings that handpick the attendance, they decreed [new rules]," wrote Rica Perroni.

Maracana is expected to become once again the home ground of Rio de Janeiro's main football teams.

But so far, only current Brazilian league champions Fluminense have signed a 35-year contract with the consortium.

Botafogo, Vasco da Gama and Flamengo are expected to share it.

 

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  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 77.

    Another ridiculous effort to control human behaviour in the name of "health and safety'. The phrase which gives cowards a voice.

    1stly - there should be no seats in soccer stadia. Standing is better because it creates a better atmosphere. If you want a seat, stay at home.

    2 - Whether someone has their top off or not is irrelevant.

    What a bunch of self righteous losers.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 76.

    Well done Brazil.

    Let's do the same here, and extend it to most public places.

    Pub beer gardens have been quite unpleasant of late too. I don't want to see a parade of fat hairy bellies, underarm hair and grotesque, wrinkly tattoos, thanks.

    Thankfully UKIP members avoid some pubs though.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 75.

    The Brazilian nation as a developing country is catching up so should culture,

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 74.

    didn't Brazil learn from South Africa had when they were so tough on their people in order to make money for the elite in their World Cup?

    they should let the fans enjoy some football

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 73.

    Supporters really support their teams in Brazil. They are not spectators, like people watching a play in a theatre. People may not understand that over here. Brazil is protesting against the elitization of football. If you want to stay seated go back to you sofa.

  • rate this
    -1

    Comment number 72.

    But we agree people can do what they like as it is there decision, like a man can marry a man likewise a woman a woman, etc etc, this should fall in that category of freedom. freedom must be total else it is not what it ist we say

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 71.

    "Controversial new plans which include a ban of shirtless and standing fans at Rio de Janeiro's Maracana stadium are causing outcry in Brazil."
    How, pray tell, can this possibly be enforced, & why would you want to? As far as I'm concerned, this is very much a part of soccer tradition.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 70.

    Game is to be enjoyed to the full not by going topless or drumming or shrilling on percussions et al. This is precursor to violence if the home team fails. A mob has no head. All such shenanigans pose a security concern. I think only the low-cultured resort to such silly depths to get a face on TV. It is now or never to act in the larger interest of the game.

  • rate this
    +6

    Comment number 69.

    Corporate elitism and 'protection of the brand' is killing football as a spectator sport. Coupled with overbearing plastic stewards and ludicrous ticket prices, going to games in this country anyway has become less and less attractive.

    Can only hope Brazilan fans tell them where to get off! Sadly, it seems UK football is past the point of no return.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 68.

    Anything that seems awkward to any situation that is annoying to maximum people (spectators / viewers) and the organizing authority, for instance inside any stadium, should be brought to moderation that s not controversial.

    - A.R.Shams's Reflection

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 67.

    Why stop the carnival that is Brazilian football? Let them celebrate their culture. As long as they don't run off with the cup, after they win it, then who cares?

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 66.

    St James' park (Newcastle) needs the same code. There's no sight worse than those Geordie moobs flapping about.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 65.

    "The changes are meant to safeguard the comfort, security and accessibility of the fans, he explained."

    And some people worry about metadata being collected by NSA, DGSE, GSHQ, BND.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 64.

    60.GH3382
    26 Minutes ago
    "Worried about topless fans when they have some of the highest poverty and deaths in any developed countries. Packs of kids roaming the streets and allegedly being killed by death squads and bloody riots going on even now. Should they even be having the World Cup. ?"

    Well said.

  • Comment number 63.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 62.

    Nothing to see in UK politics today, I take it.
    Re: football (................), when numbers drop the rules will be changed - easy action.

  • rate this
    -3

    Comment number 61.

    If you are in public,you have to stay in proper dress.This shows you are not on a sea shore.All should know and respect the laws of society or sports.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 60.

    Worried about topless fans when they have some of the highest poverty and deaths in any developed countries. Packs of kids roaming the streets and allegedly being killed by death squads and bloody riots going on even now. Should they even be having the World Cup. ?

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 59.

    That's a real shame that they would do that to one of the world's most iconic football stadiums. I would happily stand and listen to the music playing as that is a crucial part of the experience of Brazilian. Such a shame

  • rate this
    -2

    Comment number 58.

    Let's add these bans to Britain.

 

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