World Cup 2014 diary: Romance relegated to supporting role on Brazil’s big day
The events you may have missed in Brazil
Paul Bignell is an Assistant News Editor at The Independent. He has previously been the acting News Editor of the i Paper, a home news reporter for The Independent for one year and a reporter for the Independent on Sunday for six years.
Friday 13 June 2014
Brazilian commercial types have been scratching their heads in a bid to work out how to get around the thorny issue of the tournament opening on the same date the country traditionally celebrates its version of Valentine’s Day.
Those running tacky gift stores and restaurants were encouraging Brazilians to move their romantic plans up by a day, so people’s love lives won’t get in the way of the game. The Brazilian motels association announced it had formed a partnership with beer company Brahma to promote romantic mottos such as “First I will kiss you, then my jersey” – which will no doubt go down a treat with lucky Brazilian ladies.
Fabregas’s other half could win WAG battle
It will come as both a relief and a delight to television directors, as Spain enter the 20th straight minute of passing the ball across their back line and back again, to be able to cut to the crowd and the shapely figure of Shakira. The Colombian singer, the other half of Spain centre-half Gerard Pique, is undoubtedly the Grand High Wag of 2014, but expect the lenses to linger also on the Lebanese Daniella Semaan, who steps out with Spain and now Chelsea’s Cesc Fabregas despite being 13 years his senior. She is known in Spain as “Queen DD”, which is a conservative estimation of two of her more prominent charms.
Beer and football off the menu in Brighton
Those looking to pretend the World Cup doesn’t exist need look no further than the Tea Total bar in Brighton. The alcohol-free bar opened its doors an hour before the first kick-off in Brazil last night. Landlady Pasha Du Valentine said: “Watching the World Cup would be worse than getting drunk for me.” Tea Total in Brighton is offering non-alcoholic fruit juice cocktails and miso soup instead of the usual pub favourites. Form an orderly queue now…
Salvador’s metro system faces easy first day
Brazil president Dilma Rousseff was in Salvador on Wednesday as the city’s new metro system finally opened 14 years after work began on the 5.6km network – and with two days to spare before the city’s opening fixture between Spain and Holland. Demand is unlikely to be too high immediately given that businesses are closing early to allow workers to watch the football – even staff at the city’s chamber of commerce had letters telling them they could head home at noon on the next two days.
Latest in Sport
Phil Hughes head injury: Cricket world reels as Australian opener fights for his life
Sam Wallace: Players of Suarez’s standing just don’t sign for clubs like Liverpool
Phil Hughes head injury: He had one weakness – it has come back to haunt him
Schalke vs Chelsea: Jose Mourinho says his Blues side are playing better than any Chelsea team in recent memory
Manchester City vs Bayern Munich comment: Frank Lampard's part in City win shows folly of letting him leave
- 1 Tamir Rice: 12-year-old boy playing with fake gun dies after being shot by Ohio police
- 3 Black Friday 2014: Opening hours for John Lewis, Asda, PC World, GAME and Argos
- 4 Bill Cosby: Isn’t it obvious why his accusers have stayed silent up until now?
- 5 Jeremy Hunt: 'I took my children to A&E because I didn't want to wait for GP appointment'
Rochester by-election: Ukip gains second MP as Tory defector Mark Reckless holds seat
'Beast of Bolsover' Dennis Skinner takes Ukip MP Mark Reckless to task moments after he is sworn in
Rochester by-election: Labour MP Emily Thornberry resigns after posting white van and England flags tweet
The young are the new poor: Sharp increase in number of under-25s living in poverty, while over-65s are better off than ever
Revealed: How the world gets rich – from privatising British public services
Exclusive: UK approved £7m Israeli arms sales in six months before Gaza conflict