This World Cup has undeniably seen the most unpredictable results play out to date.
You would have been brave to predict Spain to bow out before the third group stage game, but they have. This world cup has seen some of the group’s biggest underdogs cause major upsets so far in the tournament.
After only two games, England and Spain have been knocked out of the World Cup finals. Although both groups were considered group of deaths, Spain and England were expected to at least make it past the group stages. The two nations which host two of the biggest leagues in the world will go home disappointed and embarrassed with their performance.
None of the neutrals really care down here in Brasil. The whole tournament has been all about the South Americans and their love and celebration for our world game- football.
As it stands, no European nation has ever won a world cup in a South American country and I don’t think that’s about to change. So far every South American team in the tournament is in a qualifying position for the next round apart from Uruguay who are just under Italy by goal difference.
One of the most amazing things I have seen so far has been four South American teams: Columbia, Chile, Argentina and Uruguay chanting at the English fans in a bar after their loss to Uruguay. For the people of South America, this is their World Cup and they definitely didn’t like the English judging from the experience I had that night.
Although this is only my first World Cup, I am almost certain Russia won’t have the same feel as walking down Copacabana beach in the sun with thousands of people. Everywhere you go there are different people from many countries chanting their hearts out. Football is a universal language for the people here and it has created peace between countries and a temporary multicultural society in the cities of Brasil
The city is filled with culture from the handmade stone pavements in the ground, to the rugged roads which lead up to the mountains and Christ the Redeemer which overlooks the whole city.
Rio is one of those famous cities which never sleeps. It’s hard not to lose track of the time or the days due to getting carried away with the relaxed and easy lifestyle as a tourist here. If you can overcome the culture shock in the first few days and accept the way of life here, you will have an unforgettable trip.
Despite what you hear in the Australian media, Rio has been quite safe and easy to get around. The only struggle has been trying to order food in English as the people only speak Portuguese.
There is still a long way to go in this World Cup, and it’s only going to get better. I cannot wait for two heavyweight South American teams to clash and cause fan chaos on the streets. The entertainment does not stop in this country!
Words by Ari Charilaou