2014-07-08 Belo Horizonte, Brazil / National Humiliation / Nationale Demütigung / Mineiraço / Mineirazo

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Regrets are about bad choices. Not bad things that happened to me, or the way that life has punched me in the face. Regret is my deep sorrow about something I did, and/or failed to do. It is the anger at myself for having had enough experience/infromation to have made the right decision, but I made the wrong one. It is about self-blame. I am sorry Bebê. – AlexK

The first of two semi-final matches of the 2014 World Cup took place on July 8th, 2014 at the Estádio Mineirão in Belo Horizonte. The match ended in a shocking loss for Brazil; Germany led 5–0 at half time, with four goals scored within six minutes, and subsequently brought the score up to 7–0 in the second half. Brazil scored a consolation goal in the last minute, ending the match 7–1.

The game has subsequently been dubbed the Mineiraço, evoking a previous ‘Spirit of national shame’ known as the Maracanaço in which Brazil lost the 1950 FIFA World Cup on home soil to Uruguay.

The game marked several tournament records. Germany’s win marked the largest margin of victory in a World Cup semi-final. The game saw Germany overtake Brazil as the highest scoring team in World Cup tournament history and become the first team to reach eight World Cup Finals. 

Miroslav Klose scored his 16th career World Cup goal and surpassed Brazil’s own Ronaldo as the tournament’s all-time record goalscorer.

Brazil’s loss broke their 62-match home unbeaten streak in competitive matches going back to the 1975 Copa América (where they lost to Peru, 1–3), equalled their biggest ever margin of defeat in a match alongside a 6–0 loss to Uruguay in 1920, and broke the record for the most goals ever conceded by Brazil in an international match.

Ultimately, the match was described as a national humiliation.

Complexo de vira-lata‘ is an expression to refer to a collective inferiority complex felt by Brazilian people in comparison to other parts of the World (such as Europe or the United States). The reference to a ‘mongrel’ (as opposed to ‘pure-bred’) carries negative connotations attributed to the perception of most Brazilians being racially mixed as well lacking in cultural refinement.

It was originally coined by novelist and writer Nelson Rodrigues, in which he referred to the trauma suffered by Brazilians in 1950 when the national football team was defeated by Uruguay’s national team in the last match of the 1950 World Cup held at the Maracanã in Rio de Janeiro.

The estimated 200,000 spectators were stunned into an eerie silence after the match was concluded, some so apparently distraught they commited suicide by jumping out of the stands. The idea persisted cropping up again the next time Brazil hosted the World Cup in 2014 when it was defeated 7-1.

I mean the inferiority in which Brazilians put themselves, voluntarily, in comparison to the rest of the World. Brazilians are the reverse Narcissus, who spit in their own image. Here is the truth: we can’t find personal or historical pretexts for self-esteem. –  Nelson Rodrigues

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