Rogério Caboclo, head of the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF), announced today in an interview with newspaper O Globo that Brazilian football is set to resume activities in August. The second- and third-divisions will start on August 8, followed by the first division, on August 9. The Copa do Brasil tournament will begin on August 26. The timetable for Brazilian football will have to be readjusted until 2022 as a result, as it will be impossible to finish the season by December.
The logistics and complications involved in restarting football are immense — requiring the reopening of hotels, chartering new flights, and, of course, adopting a whole new sanitary regiment to minimize the risks for players and staff.
In the U.S., Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and a key member of the White House coronavirus taskforce, has defended that sports leagues must operate under a “bubble format.” That is, having players insulated from the community and tested nearly every day. “If there is a second wave, which is certainly a possibility and which would be complicated by the predictable flu season, football may not happen this year,” he said, talking about the NFL American football season.
While live sports have resumed in Europe, New Zealand (with fans), and Australia, Brazil has yet to get its infection curve under control. The country has the second-highest number of infections and deaths worldwide: 1.58 million and 64,365, respectively. As The Brazilian Report has covered, the Rio de Janeiro State Championship has already resumed despite the protests of two of its largest clubs — Botafogo and Fluminense.
On June 18, Flamengo played Bangu in the iconic Maracanã stadium. The game ended with three goals — and two deaths in the coronavirus field hospital just outside the stadium.Support this coverage →