#79. Count down to the Soccer World Cup in 2010. With only 498 days left until the Fifa Soccer World Cup, I am noticing signs of soccer life stirring. Months ago Fifa President Sepp Blatter visited and brought to everyone’s attention that there was little to suggest this country was close to putting on the greatest show on earth (or is that the Olympics?). I too was concerned but decided not to go to the press with it.
Germany apparently promoted their World Cup for a full three years which led me to wonder whether we are a nation with a short attention span or one that just likes to leave things to the last minute?
Mostly the signs of life are coming from sponsors and their ad agencies who are starting to promote what many hope will be South Africa’s greatest moment on the world stage since Nelson Mandela had his debut. Until now it’s been background stuff — just the occasional shudder in Rosebank as the Gautrain builders blast their way to Pretoria,
the sight of cranes looming over parts of the city, lots of new hotel construction, traffic islands being prettified from Soweto to Fourways and the mutterings of a taxi driver en route to OR Tambo International airport as he stared up at the skeletal form of the Gautrain’s skytrack, and wondered whether come 2010, he will still have a job.
Visually the prize must go to sponsor MTN who have covered the side of a building in Braamfontein with this striking graphic of a soccer ball smashing into it
conjuring that feeling of —
when 2010 fever strikes we won’t know what’s hit us.
The photo was taken by Gregor Rohrig from the Nelson Mandela Bridge (my favourite piece of Joburg engineering).
* Thanks GR