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Female football fans find being accepted by men hard in Brazil

IANS  |  Sao Paulo 

Several female Brazilian fans have created a project known as "Dibradoras" (Dribblers) in an effort to reduce male in

Roberta Nina Cardoso, 35, is a team fan and a regular at the local stadium, where she and three friends experienced an unsavoury incident a while back, reports

While looking for a spot in the stadium parking lot, around 30 uniformed hooligans approached them, sticking their hands in the car windows, touching their hair and calling them "cute," "wonderful" and "fine".

"Women are not seen as a that understands soccer, they don't understand tactics," Nina said. "They don't know what 'offside' means. They are here only to see the players. That is how we are pigeonholed."

Renata Mendonca, 28, is also a fan and goes to the stadium two or three times a month.

Even though she said that recently it has become "a little less tortuous," she added that wearing shorts still gets her catcalls.

Their passion for later brought Nina and Renata together, and -- along with and -- they decided to launch the "Dibradoras" project.

"We want to give women a voice and a place in the sport and erase the image of the woman who knows nothing about soccer," Nina told

equality in is still a long way off in the country of 200 million -- with women accounting for more than half the population -- and where 75 per cent are self-proclaimed fans, according to a survey by the Parana Pesquisas Institute, published in late 2016.

Difficulties in finding a suitable jersey also make it hard for women to join the ranks of fandom, as some jerseys made for women have a bizarre cleavage or only come in pink.

"I don't want a pink jersey, I want the one my team wears," Renata said.



(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, March 09 2018. 14:52 IST