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ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

Layla Anna Lee |

I was nominated to do the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge in order to raise awareness for Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

I accept and I nominate my good friend photographer Tom Leishman, my KickTV co-host & former USA national soccer player Jimmy Conrad, meu amigo Barcelona midfielder Rafinha Alcantara, and I challenged Crystal Palace Co-Chairman Steve Parish!

I wonder who will accept?!

Donate to ALS on www.als.net

Photos from Rio

Layla Anna Lee |

I’m currently in Rio presenting live from the World Cup for adidas and Kick TV. Check out my Twitter @Laylaloves for all updates but in the meantime, I’ve sent over some photos for you to enjoy!



A ‘Happy’ Protest

Layla Anna Lee |

A group of savvy protestors from Porto Alegre, Brasil, have made a fun video clip drawing attention to their complaints.

Porto Alegre is home to Estádio Beira-Rio, a R$290 Million World Cup stadium that is not yet completed… like many of the public services in the area.

In this video, the joyful protesters draw attention to local construction that’s been on ‘indefinite pause’ due to World Cup strains; roads left unfinished, traffic problems and issues with public transport.

Twerking in abandoned construction sites and clapping through rush hour traffic, the (UN)Happy protestors use the Pharell Williams track ‘Happy’ to express their juxtaposing dancing displeasure.

Oh dear Brasil

Layla Anna Lee |

 

 

It has only been a matter of weeks since FIFA’s Secretary General Jerome Valcke called the Arena Da Baizada World Cup Stadium in Curitiba an ‘Emergency Situation’ but now, upon revisiting the site, he claims to be happy with current efforts and has confirmed the stadium will take part in this years World Cup… despite being massively behind schedule.

Dilma Rousseff, Brasil’s president, has full confidence in her nation’s preparations claiming that current delays are “relatively simple” to sort.

Whilst all eyes have been on Sochi, Brasil have masterminded a media turnaround and all of a sudden we’re apparently ready. The rest of the world have taken a positive view and are now listening to the politicians in hard hats surrounded by rubble saying, “Look! Isn’t it lovely?”.

No it’s not. 4 weeks hasn’t turned anything major around and we’re still in trouble.

The high speed rail links Dilma promised haven’t even started – we don’t expect them to, they have been neatly shelved alongside the airport upgrades and a box titled ‘future false promises’.

Protests are still causing mayhem – although decreased in size they still bug the policing system and an online drive for larger World Cup timed protests looms.

But let’s return to one building in particular that emphasises Brasil’s delays.

These photos of Arena Da Baixada in Curitiba were taken on the 18th and 20th of February 2014… yes that’s this February and under four months until the stadiums’ first game.

 

 

This structure needs to be completed inside 118 days.

 

 

Only 2700 hours and counting.

 

 

What do you think?

At the end of the day us Brazilians only really need grass and a few toilets to make the whole World Cup fiesta function. It WILL happen and it WILL be the most incredible World Cup, however despite our President’s confidence and Valcke’s change of heart – to many of us Brazilians this is still most definitely an ‘emergency situation’.

Below the architect’s vision of Arena da Baixada.

 

 

Image rights www.arenacap.com.br

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