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Culture–Latin American’s are Serious about their #1 Pastime

by Brandi

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August 3rd, 2009

Just like many parts of the mundo (world), soccer is the “número uno” favorite pastime in Latin America. Latin American’s take soccer very seriously, and many fans are fanatical about their teams.

The word for soccer in Spanish is “fútbol”. It sounds and looks like the English word “football”. But, if you are referring to U.S.-style “football”, you would say “fútbol americano” instead of “fútbol” which, as I mentioned, means “soccer” in español.

As I mencioné, Latin Americans are very serios about their favorite sport “fútbol”. After many of their partidos (games), the fans meet up with each other afuera (outside). The fans from one equipo (team) are pitted against the fans from the other equipo and they will usually get into a physical pelea (fight). It seems like it isn’t enough for the partido to be decided by the final score; the fans want to show who really won by getting in a pelea after the partidos. Sometimes the fights can become very serious and dangerous!

In Brazil, they don’t speak español, but they are very integrated into the Latin American culture because they are surrounded on most sides by countries that speak español. Anyway, a few years ago, Brazi’s equipo nacional (national team) was in competición for the world title and their goal keeper missed a key stop. Some fans were extremely enojados (angry) when the team returned to Brazil. The fans found the goal keeper and it wasn’t a pretty site. As I mencioné, they are very serios about their favorite sport fútbol.

Professional deportes in the United States generally don’t get serios enough that fans fight and injure each other or the atletas (athletes). If it is that way in other parts of the mundo (world), please write a comment on the blog and let me know.

Latins here in the United States are also very serios about their fútbol. If the games aren’t on their televisión at home, they will often pay a lot of dinero to watch partidos on a large televisión at a Latin/Spanish restaurant or casa of un amigo (friend).

Moral of the historia: If you are in Latin America, near a estadio (stadium), just after a game, take cover fast (or be sure to wear a bullet-proof vest). Or — just stay away from that general area altogether. Also, if you are friends with Latin people, it is good to be aware of how serios they take “fútbol”. You may want to ask them about their equipo favorito (favorite team), or how the copa mundial (world cup soccer) is coming along.

Sneak peek at next week: Personal visit to someone in Latin America.

¡Hasta la próxima semana! (Until Next Week!)
David S. Clark — President / Director
Click here to learn Spanish.

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