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Brazil fever grips Allston-Brighton

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  • Brazil fever grips Allston-Brighton

    Allston-Brighton TAB, MA
    June 30 2006

    Brazil fever grips Allston-Brighton

    By Meghann Ackerman/ Staff Writer
    Friday, June 30, 2006 - Updated: 02:02 PM EST

    Although America was knocked out of World Cup play, plenty of fans
    are still packing bars and restaurants to catch broadcasts of the
    games. In Allston, home to a large population of Brazilians, yellow
    and green jerseys and flags have been decorating the street and
    businesses since the tournament began on June 9.

    The sentiment among fans, Brazilian or not, is that watching the
    soccer matches has brought people together and provided a link for
    recent immigrants to each other and established citizens.

    By 11 a.m. on Tuesday, June 23, fans had already headed to Café
    Brazil and Café Belo, two of Allston's Brazilian restaurants and bars
    that have been showing World Cup games. The mood was celebratory as
    Brazil trounced Ghana, 3-0.

    "I didn't think people would come this morning," said Otavio
    Canargo, the manager of Café Belo. By game time, the restaurant was

    "We're so confident they'll win we skipped work on Tuesday
    morning," said Pedro Dosreis, a rabid Brazil fan.

    Rachel Franca came to Boston from Brazil about a month ago to
    study at Boston University. Although she admitted that she doesn't
    follow soccer as much as she used to, she said coming to the games
    makes her less homesick.

    "This is where I come home to," she said. "I come and get to be
    here with all the Brazilians and hear people speaking Portuguese."

    Canargo, said that he's noticed Brazilians and Americans coming
    together while enjoying a drink or some food and watching the game.

    "I'm here to support Brazil all the way," said Harout Semerdjian,
    an Armenian by way of Los Angeles who has many Brazilian friends.

    Support of Brazil has stayed strong, despite some obstacles.
    Several people, who requested not to be named, watching the game on
    Tuesday said that at some games officials came in to check
    identification. The fear, they said, was that the officials were from
    immigration and looking to deport people here illegally.

    Dosreis, however, said even immigration checks won't deter
    Brazil's fans.

    "They're still going to party, even if immigration comes," he

    Because Boston sports fans are notorious for destructive behavior
    after big wins, District 14 Police Captain William Evans said he's
    had officers checking on crowds at the World Cup games.

    "It seems like we haven't been getting the crowds," he said.
    "We're going to put extra people out to monitor Saturday's game.
    Misbehavior won't be tolerated."

    Canargo said he has not had any problems with security at Café

    "People are pretty calm. They get excited about the game, but
    they don't cause any trouble," he said.

    Brazil will be playing their next game tomorrow, July 1, against
    France. The game begins at 3 p.m., and the tournament is at the
    single-elimination point, meaning the loser of this game will not