I played football for a very short period in my younger years, as a matter a fact, I played Tennis, I tried Theatre, Swimming, anything that would wear me out; my mother claims that I had too much energy in me. I ended up with one of the loves of my life: Gymnastics, as I tell more about in the “About Me” section.
Growing up in Sweden, football, the real football, or soccer as they call it in the U.S, is a very important sport, in Europe in general. And although Sweden is not playing in the 2014 World Cup, I will always remember the 1994 World Cup, I was 9, and Sweden made it to 3rd place. It was so much fun to cheer on your country’s team, especially as they were quickly advancing one game closer to the gold. I remember seeing the defining game at my aunt’s place, and we stayed up until 2 or 3 am watching the game and celebrating. I even remember a song that was made for this occasion called “När vi gräver guld i USA,” which translates to “When we dig gold in USA,” which connotation I probably didn’t understand back then, but I am pretty sure that it made a reference to the “digging” during the Gold rush in California, as well as of course the Golden first place… right?
And thank you YouTube! I found a video of the song that clearly brings me back to memory lane; I get goose bumps just watching it. I remember this oh so well.
Fortunately, I have never had to watch a World Cup match between Sweden and Chile, and this year is not different. And as I celebrated Sweden’s success back in 1994, I am proudly feeling great about cheering Chile for this year’s World Cup. A lot of the players are actually people that I recall from the media when I had my TV moments back in Chile so it’s going to be so much fun to watch them in action. Chileans call their national team “La Roja,” which means “The Red,” referring to the red of the flag of course, which refers to the blood shed during Independence days from Spain.
In Chile football is huge, and so is the Chilean pride. I would say that the Chilean pride can most be seen in Chileans living outside of Chile, which is probably a more of a “clinging on to an identity in a foreign country” kind of thing, but all in all, the patriotism in Chile is very similar to the American (as in the USA American) patriotism. And these two commercials in reference to the World Cup reflect it quite well.
The first one is a commercial by Cristal, which is probably one of the biggest beer brands in Chile. The commercial is called “Chile mete miedo,” which translates to “Chile scares.” I think it’s a fun commercial, making references to movies like “The Shinning,” and “The Ring.” The Chilean team has quite a few exported players to the European League, so in my opinion they should be mentally prepared enough to be taking on a platform as wide as the World Cup. The idea is to intimidate and not be intimidated by the great teams playing this year.
The second commercial is by Banco the Chile, one of the biggest banks in Chile. In this commercial they used the infamous Chilean miners as a message of motivation and inspiration to the 2014 Chilean World Cup Team. Lately, I’ve seen this a lot in the Chilean exporting image, to use the fact that Chile is located in the end of the world and turn it into a strategic Marketing strength. Like for example, “You can only find the best wines in the end of the World.” Chile is so miniscule geographically, and the culture of poor self-worth still lingers from its history, and so I think that this commercial elegantly used that emotional tie to remind every Chilean that “Para un Chileno nada es impossible,” that translates to “For a Chilean nothing is impossible.”
Today is the inaguration of 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil, I am excited to follow this worldwide sports event. I even left the DVR recording the first game Brazil v/s Croatia, and tomorrow it’s Chile’s first game against Australia. Who will be the 2014 “Gold Digger”? I can’t wait to find out.
Who are you rooting for?
Miss Natalia Silva