Print version ISSN 0104-7183
GIGLIO, Sérgio Settani; MORATO, Márcio Pereira; STUCCHI, Sérgio and ALMEIDA, José Julio Gavião de. O dom de jogar bola. Horiz. antropol. [online]. 2008, vol.14, n.30, pp. 67-84. ISSN 0104-7183. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0104-71832008000200003.
This paper aims at investigating how being gifted, as a category for classifying football players, interacts with the sociocultural construction of the sporting phenomenon. The category and its meanings were analyzed in relation to magic and faith, since the Brazilian football environment is very superstitious. Football players and fans and also the press usually attribute success and failure in the sport to being gifted. The symbolic efficacy of the natural ability is validated as it is accepted and conveyed by its own creators and consumers as a magical fact. That sense causes them to signify the rich Brazilian context of learning how to play football as a matter of luck: players are either gifted or non-gifted.
Keywords : culture; football; gift; magic.