Portugal-North Korea Match Brings Out More Locals

Ronaldo has turned a lot of South Africans into Portugal fans!

While there’s been a lot written about ticket costs and distribution problems limiting access to the World Cup matches for the “average” South African, I did see a lot of them at today’s Cape Town match between Portugal and North Korea.

Child from Naphakade school and his vuvuzela

This is the first day game we’ve had in Cape Town, and that means we’ve seen children in large numbers for the first time at Green Point. While schools are out for the duration of the tournament, the kids did come in school groups wearing their uniforms.

I met children from Cloetsville High School in Stellenbosch, a community in wine country about an hour outside of Cape Town. They took part in a recycling competition sponsored by a multi-national corporation, and won 100 tickets.

I also met some kids from Caledon, another community about 40 minutes outside of Cape Town.

Students from Swartberg

These are the students from Swartberg Secondary School.

The very first group that caught my eye were these elementary students from Naphakade School, in Ilingelethu, south of Malmesbury.

Naphakade school kids

They’re from a new settlement (1994) where unemployment runs upwards of 60% Getting to this match is no doubt a huge treat.

During the match, I sat next to this group of Portugal supporters. They are from Kimberley, SA, and traveled nine hours by car to get to the match.

He painted the vuvuzela with Portugal's colors

I was surprised to find out that they don’t have any Portuguese roots or connections.  They just decided to adopt the Portugal side, and I suspect the girls in the group (who adore Ronaldo) had something to say about the decision.

Portuguese fans waiting for breakfast

Finally, I met these visitors who’ve made the trip from Portugal. They are thoroughly enjoying Cape Town, and weren’t the least bit nervous before the match (which is why they could eat so heartily).

They had no reason to be nervous, as the final score indicates:

Portugal               7

North Korea         0

Onto to their final first round matches with Brazil and Cote D’Ivoire.

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7 responses to “Portugal-North Korea Match Brings Out More Locals

  1. Thank you for the interest you have in our children and the major part they play in South Africa and now the World Cup. Yes, Portugal has its roots deep in the History of Africa. We however have a lot of fish shops in Cape Town owned by Portuguese. You have to stay longer to see more. South Africa has tooooo… much to share to only stay a short while. Thumps up for Portugal!!

  2. South Africa is a great sporting nation as you know. We’ve produced top rugby;golf;swimming;athletics &paralympics teams to mention a few. The children in the pics above are not from priveled backgrounds. We will encourage them to comment on Myra’s questions. Wearing school uniforms makes them easily identifiable in a large crowd of people. A very interesting project which is running during the World Cup is the iSchool Africa Youth Press teams. Young journalists from 15 schools in SA are covering the WCup and reporting on all the games and the hype. see http://www.ischoolafica.com for the latest update.

  3. We have a large Portuguese community in South Africa. They also played a role in our history. In 1488 Dias circumnavigated the Cape, naming it “Cabo de Bõa Esperança” or the Cape of Good Hope. This was a major breakthrough in the search for discovering a sea-route to India!

  4. Would love to know more about these school kids….. even if some do come from parts of the country where unemployment runs high, are they of a privileged class?

    Do they wear their school uniforms even though school’s out as a source of pride?

    And hey, what do Portuguese fans eat for breakfast in South Africa?

  5. Hey Maxelo!
    Ronaldo scored one goal, assisted on at least one, and started many serious offensive attacks!

  6. Hahaha! I like the “Ronaldo for president” pic. I didn’t get to watch the game, will probably do so tonight. Mind telling me just how many the fella actually scored?

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