8 Jun 2012

Brazil president signs off beer-selling law for World Cup matches

12:11 pm on 8 June 2012

Brazil's president Dilma Rousseff has signed into law a measure approving beer sales during 2014 World Cup matches, bowing to pressure from football's world governing body FIFA.

The bill was passed last month by the senate after international football authorities balked over an alcohol prohibition in Brazil's sports arenas that has been in force since 2003.

Lawmakers in May passed a package of measures demanded by FIFA that include selling beer in plastic cups, despite concern from some lawmakers that allowing alcohol consumption could lead to rowdiness at the events.

Its passage ends a long and strident battle between world football authorities and the Brazil government, which is eager to prevent hooliganism and violence as it hosts the sport's most celebrated event.

Emotions already can run high during the football premier championship event - particularly during matches between powerhouses like Brazil and its neighbour Argentina - and there will likely be plenty of fans from both countries at the tournament, increasing the possibility of clashes.