No Brazil, Portugal football teams for Lusofonia Games


New Delhi: As if the missed deadlines and shoddy state of preparedness weren't enough, the organisers of the Lusofonia Games in Goa have been dealt another body blow with Brazil deciding not to send its football and volleyball teams.Portugal has only agreed to send its 'C' level soccer side. The Goans, thus, have been devoid of an opportunity to watch the highly-skilled Brazilian footballers live in action.Brazil's former sports minister Bernard Razjman, had told the organisers during his last visit to Goa that it would take a lot of money to bring the champion football side here."Same was his view for Brazil's volleyball team which is one of the best sides in the world. Bringing both teams here involve a lot of money but they should have come here to play. Football is Goa's state sport and Brazil would have added a lot of sheen to the Games," an official told PTI.Portugal also expressed helplessness to send its top-notch football team for the third edition of the Games citing crammed international calendar, which effectively means the Games has lost its sheen to a great extent.Lusofonia Games is a multi-sport event organised by the ACOLOP, which involves athletes coming from Lusophone (Portuguese-speaking) countries, namely those belonging to the CPLP (Community of Portuguese Language Countries), and also others where there are significant Portuguese communities or that have a common past with the Iberian country.However, one good news for the organisers is Brazil have confirmed its participation in athletics, table tennis, judo, taekwondo and basketball. Portugal too will participate in all disciplines with a team of 284 members."Two other ACOLOP teams in the top 100, Cape Verde and Angola, have confirmed their participation in football event," the official said.The organisers are also having problems with the lack of interest on part of the participating nations towards the Games. The deadline for submitting the list of entries has expired this month and only four entries have been received for basketball event, four for volleyball and six for beach volleyball.

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