Portuguese fields as a reflection of world football

They call it the land of the divine Cristiano Ronaldo. They called it the land of Eusébio, the man who on the green grass could be both ‘Panther’ and ‘Black Pearl’ at the same time. But this land actually doesn’t belong to men or prophets, it doesn’t belong to individuals or heroes, it belongs to a higher entity that spreads country after country, cancha after cancha. It belongs to ‘Another Championship’-everyone’s championship. Because everything in Portugal has a spherical shape. Every breath, every thought, every word, every view. It doesn’t matter if your eyes cross desert areas or rugged headlands, oceanic overhangs or worn-out metropolitan neighborhoods: everywhere you will observe the rectangular outline of a goal, everywhere you will perceive the word of the most profane and relevant religion in modern society.

In the most extreme western outpost of Europe you will hear it called ‘futebol,’ in these fields you will sense the presence of past actions, present connections, and future presences. You will discover that Portugal is an exotic and intimate mirror of the world: a world that is ready to welcome, as it does every four years, the most mystical celebration of football. It’s the World Cup, it’s the exaltation of the most cosmopolitan and heterogeneous element on Earth, it’s the footballing concretization of aspirations, cultures and societies, it’s the elitist transposition of all that is born and grows in these little shrines portrayed by the lens of Bruno Santos. We are in Portugal, but we are everywhere. We are simply in football, in what Pasolini described as “the last sacred representation of our time”.

Credits: BrunoSantos.com
Text by Gianmarco Pacione