Thursday, July 15, 2010

What Future Beyond the Cup?

As the World Cup fades away in South Africa, locals are left wondering whether the investment was worthwhile, and how the government will shift its focus to the country's pressing social and economic problems.

[I]t remains to be seen if the enthusiasm and unity fostered by the World Cup can be sustained, or if a national torpor will overtake a fractious country in which much of the population lacks basic services. If the resolve that led to a successful tournament can be marshaled to provide needed services, it could be testament to the power of sport to improve lives. But South Africans are wary that once the enthusiasm of the tournament dissipates, this country of 48 million people will return to normal, which is to say 25 percent unemployment and wide disparities between the rich and the poor.

South Africa Wonders What Lies Beyond the Cup
The New York Times
July 12, 2010