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By Dreassi E., Gottard A.

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They also traveled to nearby cities, not only looking for a game but also trying to spark the formation of competitors in the region. 33 Although soccer benefited from a large-scale rise of sports, which invaded the leisure time of Brazilian elites as never before, it also suffered the criticisms that this frenzy of activity provoked. Physical exertion had not been part of upper-class ideals in the country until the latter half of the nineteenth century. Such sports as existed among the elite tended to provide opportunities for socializing rather than demand participation.

18 Such displays of skill on the trip foreshadowed the glorification of a fluid, specifically Brazilian style that European as well as Brazilian observers would note in the 1938 World Cup. That Cup came too late for Fried; he had retired in 1933. Nevertheless, the trajectory of his career, with the Paulistano excursion coming in his peak, captured many of the stresses that accompanied the expansion of soccer in Brazil, from the early domination of elite white men to the increasing participation of men of color and of the lower classes and on to the full professionalization of the sport.

After Uruguay traveled home, only two teams remained; Brazil, with three ties and only one victory to its credit, defeated Paraguay easily. ”110 Broader problems hampered the performance of the national team in other instances during the 1920s and ’30s. Racism, in often blatant form, had a profound impact. A series of incidents in the early 1920s showed that Brazilian authorities harbored serious reservations about including AfroBrazilian players in any team representing the nation. When the city of Rio prepared to receive an official visit of King Alberto of Belgium in 1920, officials tried to present the most modern and civilized image of Brazil they could.

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