Thursday, 19 January 2012

Fifa: Bring a Bottle!

Beer must be sold at all venues hosting matches at the 2014 World Cup Finals in Brazil, football's world governing body, Fifa, has announced today. Finally then, octogenarian President Sepp Blatter’s able to organise a few piss-ups, though in unusual locations. After his demented statements on racism recently – I was surprised to learn he’s in fact Swiss – it seems he’s decided to chase the populist ticket. Or at least, shuffle after it.

In a statement, Fifa explained: "Alcoholic drinks are part of the World Cup, so we're going to have them. That's something we won't negotiate." This insistence is at odds with Brazilian law, which banned the sale of booze at football grounds in 2003 after increasing violence. Even Qatar’s 2022 World Cup will have visitors’ drinking zones, though to avoid infidel temptation the people who actually live there will be banned from them.

There’s a reason for this enlightened attitude. It turns out brewer Budweiser, hailing from the world’s most powerful footballing nation, is a big Fifa sponsor. But to dispel any concern over alcohol-fuelled violence there's a simple solution: serve no beer at all to Engerland fans. Everybody else who’s had a few knows how to behave.

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