They came from behind but Brazil ended the World Cup opener 3-1 winners on home turf against Croatia, capping the first day of festivities inside the Arena de Sao Paulo Thursday.
The opening ceremony got under way before the game with a cast of hundreds paying tribute to Brazil’s nature, people and football. It culminated in a performance of the official World Cup song “We Are One” by Jennifer Lopez, rapper Pitbull and Brazil’s Claudia Leitte.
While excitement built inside the stadium, outside police were using tear gas to quell a demonstration of about 50 people unhappy at the expense of hosting the tournament, the BBC reported. Airport workers Rio de Janeiro also blocked a road outside the airport, demanding a wage increase and a World Cup bonus.
The month-long tournament sees 32 nations compete in 64 games.
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