As Brazil angles for a seat on the UN Security Council, the nation’s footballers are being drawn into the fray. Brazil recently played a friendly in downtrodden Haiti, a gesture to curry favor with UN decision-makers. However, a number of notable Brazilian soccer stars weren’t able to attend because AC Milan and Bayern Munich refused to release them for the match. President Lula Da Silva was livid, and the five players in question wound up being suspended for matches against Germany and Bolivia. Did the orders to suspend trace back to President Da Silva, or were they made independently of him?
That’s the question–and the controversy–facing Brazilian soccer as they begin World Cup qualifying play. And now it appears President Da Silva is moving against the Brazilian Football Association by introducing strict term limits to the higher offices.
As for Brazil’s bid for the Security Council, they won’t be joining the ranks anytime soon.