Switzerland celebrates Brazil win

Pro-Brazil supporters poured onto Zurich's streets Keystone

Swiss support for Brazil's World Cup victory over Germany erupted into a spontaneous display of good-natured partying.

This content was published on July 1, 2002 - 12:56

As Switzerland's pro-German fans went to ground, those who supported the South American team took to the streets almost as soon as the final whistle sounded.

In Zurich, at least 10,000 fans crammed the inner city Langstrasse area, well known for its multicultural population.

The dancing, singing revellers included Brazilians, Latinos, football fans and native Swiss who had fallen under the spell of the tournament's eventual winners.

Pubs reported healthy sales of beer and caipirinhas (a hefty Brazilian cocktail of white rum, sugar and limes). Helping it all go down was the sight of scantily-clothed samba dancers, shaking off any concern for Switzerland's usually more restrained dress code.

"Mini Rio"

Some observers described the Zurich party as a "mini Rio Carnival", with others suggesting that the city had not seen such a rollicking party after a football game in a long time.

One newspaper said the celebrations had helped to further the cause of Swiss integration politics. The mass-market Blick newspaper included tips on how to perform the samba in its Monday edition.

The energetic show of support from the Swiss public for Brazil's 2-0 win also raised questions about why the majority of Switzerland's football fans appeared to support Brazil, rather than the country's Teutonic neighbour.

Most sporting commentators concluded that the Brazilian win had vindicated the team's free-flowing game over the more stolid German defensive style.

Other cities also joined in the festivities. In Bern, the city centre swelled with the sounds of honking cars, festooned with Brazilian flags.

swissinfo with agencies

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