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HomeSportsOpinion - Tony Goes: Brazil's long-suffering victory threatens Galvão Bueno's farewell party

Opinion – Tony Goes: Brazil’s long-suffering victory threatens Galvão Bueno’s farewell party


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Sao Paulo

Amidst the drumming and singing in Brazil and Qatar, there is one more party going on in this World Cup: Galvão Bueno da Globo’s farewell. The broadcaster decided to give a memorable send-off to its most important sports announcer, who will leave its staff after this World Cup.

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The clash with Switzerland, which ended 1-0 this Monday (28), was Brazil’s 50th match in a World Cup narrated by Galvão on Globo. The transmission began with a clip in his honor, bringing together some of his most memorable moments in other games and culminating with Richarlison’s great goal in the game against Serbia last Thursday (24).

Afterwards, Galvão went live with his usual euphoria. He called Olodum, pressed the r’s and translated into words the optimistic joy that always invades us at times like this. An anticipatory longing hit the viewer’s chest.

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For the party to be complete, only one more Brazilian victory was missing. But the first half was mediocrely balanced, with both teams playing well below expectations.

Galvão Bueno was losing patience. He complained about Tite, about almost all the players, about the bad pitch at stadium 975. He started talking, taking the space of commentators Ana Thaís Matos and Júnior.

The break was painful. Discouragement persisted in emerging in the speeches of the venerable narrator. There was still hope that we would repeat the performance against the Serbs, when our selection grew in the second half.

And indeed we grew, but not so much. A goal by Vini Jr. was annulled due to impediment. At first Galvão was thrilled, of course, but he soon realized that the VAR would reset the score again, and he reacted soberly. No anger or despair, just the experience of someone who has played in 13 World Cups.

The goal finally came, by Casemiro’s feet, this time without a doubt. Galvão celebrated, like all of us, and from then on, his voice became more enthusiastic. But without exaggeration: even winning, it was obvious that Brazil was not in its best form. We all ended up satisfied, as Brazil qualified for the next phase, but without that feeling of being washed away.

Let’s speak the truth. It was a boring game, as Casemiro himself admitted in the interview he gave right after the final whistle. If it was hard to watch, imagine narrating. And Galvão Bueno overcame this challenge with gallantry, justifying his fame and longevity.

The guy has detractors. He’s the butt of jokes and memes, and some can’t wait for him to hang up his boots. But it’s challenging games like this Brazil v Switzerland that give a veteran like Galvão Bueno the chance to do what he does best: verbalize the fans’ emotions.

This is not to say that Galvão was perfect. The commentators were thrown into the corner, especially the great Ana Thaís Matos. I hope this slip is corrected in the next games. Also because this Cup is a watershed in Globo’s transmission, with women like Karine Alves, Renata Silveira and Ana Thaís herself assuming an unprecedented role.

Tony Goes's photo

Tony Goes is 62 years old. He was born in Rio de Janeiro, but has lived in São Paulo since childhood. He has written for several comedy series and variety shows, as well as a few feature films. And the blog that bears his name is updated daily:

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