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If there’s one thing Brazil does right it’s football.
Which is why, despite not knowing the difference between a penalty and a free kick, I couldn’t not take a peek at São Paulo’s Museu do Futebol, especially with my hostel being in such close proximity to it according to Google Maps.
Guess what? Google Maps lied! It was a bloody long walk.
Allegedly it’s the same distance from Clinicas and Paulista Avenue/Consolação Metro Stations, entirely downhill from both. Which is all fine and dandy until it comes to walking back, and then your calves feel like you spent the last few hours playing football as opposed to reading about football.
So anyway, the museum.
It’s based in the Estádio do Pacaembu which, at the time it was built in 1940 was the biggest stadium in the whole of South America. It lost that title a long time ago now, though.
The museum is set up across three floors, with an assortment of videos, pictures, informative writings, interactive games and activities throughout. The only downside is that absolutely everything is in Portuguese. Being a Spanish/Italian translator, I’m lucky in that I can read Portuguese and get by. Listening and speaking though? No. So the videos, commentaries and other announcements went straight over my head, but it was actually really enjoyable looking at the pictures and reading the descriptions.
Each room in the museum had a different ‘theme’ so to speak.
The first contained a lot of holographic pictures of past football players – the only two I recognised being Pele and Coutinho, both of whom retained a prominent role throughout the whole museum. Then there was one with hundreds and hundreds of pictures on the wall, and booklets (choose between Portuguese and Spanish) for you to read about each photo.
My favourite room by far was towards the end of the museum, dedicated to the World Cup. There were podiums for each year up until 2014, with each podium covered in pictures, facts and videos.
Despite not knowing a thing about football, and having next to no knowledge of Portuguese, it was actually quite enjoyable. And at only R$9 per ticket (or free on Saturdays!) it’s a nice way to spend a rainy afternoon indoors.