By M. Goncalves
Brazil vs Argentina, likely the biggest sports rivalry between any two countries. Be it in any sport, if Argentina and Brazil are up against each other, it will be a match that will be remembered for the ages. The turbulent relationship between the fans of the respective countries has always been this way, as the stage where these fans usually have the most conflict is football. Though there is still bad blood among these fans in sports like basketball, volleyball, and field hockey, the tension between Brazilian and Argentinian fans is always at its highest in football matches.
Over many years, the fans of these two football powerhouses have argued whose star players are better, Garrincha vs Alfredo di Stefano, Pelé vs Maradona, and now Neymar vs Messi. FIFA (Federation of International Football Association) described the football history between these two countries as “an essence of football rivalry”, as the countries played a total of 108 matches against each other, with Brazil winning 43 of those games, Argentina winning 39 games and 26 ending in a draw. On the other hand, there is an aspect where Brazil is ahead of Argentina, whilst Brazil has won a world-leading 5 world cup titles, Argentina only has 2. The stadium is always packed when these two giants of international football are set to play against one another, with countless different songs and chants being created as the fans roar the lyrics in unison. The last time these two teams played, it was as a world cup qualifier game, however, the game was intervened in the 7th minute because of a COVID-19 protocol breach by a couple of Argentinian players. The game before that, these two rivals squared off in the final for the 2020 Copa America, with Argentina defeating Brazil 1-0, due to a goal scored by Angel di Maria. After the game was won, a few Argentinian players began chanting one of the songs created by the fans that made fun of the Brazilian players, instantly, Lionel Messi, Argentina’s team captain, told his teammates to cease singing any inappropriate chants, showing great sportsmanship and respect.
These two south American countries have always competed exceptionally hard when they were faced off against each other, in all sports. This rivalry will certainly continue for many more years, as both have always been known for having two of the best and most evenly matched teams in the world.