The Copa América final at the Maracanã, between Brazil and Argentina, generated reactions in both extremes.
While many Brazilians were frustrated by losing a title at home, the Argentines returned to celebrate a trophy after 28 years, and it was also Messi’s first title with his country.
Bolavip spoke to former Brazilian footballer José Ferreira Neto, where the 54-year-old reflected on the loss from a Brazil point of view. One of Neto’s first questions is his thoughts on the Seleção losing the Copa America to Argentina.
“In fact, as a former soccer player, I don’t think these players represent me as a Brazilian. They are players who, many times, don’t play the football that we always had with Rivaldo, Ronaldo, Romário, Bebeto… Not to mention Pelé, Jairzinho… If a team needs to have Neymar as an idol… Not for me It’s. But losing the title to Argentina is painful because of the rivalry,” Neto said.
“The team that represents me is the female team, with Marta, Érika, Andressa (Alves), coach Pia (Sundhage). I didn’t support Argentina, but I wasn’t sad about the loss.”
The next question that Neto answered is whether, as a Brazilian, he was happy to see Messi win an international trophy for his national team.
“Messi represents the football that all children love. Messi is a Barcelona player, but the world likes him. So, I was very happy with the achievement, because there were four runners-up. In the fifth, he got an important title, and I congratulate him on his career. Messi is not a celebrity, he is an important player,” Neto said.
In the final various Brazilians were rooting for Argentina to secure the victory as some feel no connection with the national team. It seems as though Neto represents those who didn’t mind going against their own national team in that final.