On the 17th and the 18th of October, 2020, Copa America Taiwan is held in Fu Jen Catholic University’s football pitch. This year, Copa America Taiwan gets the support from Digital Diplomacy (數位外交行動計畫), and thus it is able to bring itself to the next level. Apart from the specialties stands that have been enjoyed by the visitors every year, this time Copa America itself absolutely grabs everyone’s eye with children’s, men’s and women’s games all happening for the first time in the history. As a result, the number of the visitors unsurprisingly hits the highest record of 3,000, showing the potential of this annual event in the future.
Affected by COVID-19, the world has been a little dull due to the lack of the thrill from football games, however, here in Taiwan, Copa America Taiwan brings us a mini World Cup to feast our eyes with. In men’s games, the participants are Guatemala, The UK, Paraguay, Belize, Panama, El Salvador, Spain, Nicaragua, Taiwan, Haiti, France, Eswatini, and Honduras; while in women’s games, we got Paraguay, Guatemala, Panama, Honduras, and Taiwan.
The game starts at 8 a.m. on Saturday, all the way to around 9 p.m. on the same day; and the next day of the event starts at the same time in the morning, all the way to almost 10 p.m. The schedule is quite intense, hence every match lasts for 50 mins.
In the personal opinion of the writer, one of the best thing in the event is that on the first day the two commentators cooperate with each other pretty well, giving the spectators thorough report of what’s happening on the pitch. It is rather a great example made for Taiwanese audience who is not used to watching football.
However, on the second day, during the quarter final match of Taiwan and France, the commentator gives the microphone to two Taiwanese who seem to be very little professional. The action of cheering for the home team for the whole match in the role of the commentators clearly provokes the anger among the French team, as a result, after winning the PK, one of the French team members takes the microphone and shouts “
Taïwan c’est fini!!”
Not sure if it is lucky that probably not many Taiwanese people understands French, because it would not be a beautiful scene if it leads to any further confrontation.
Despite the interlude, when the event comes to its climax, the final, the atmosphere has got back to be thrilling and cheerful. The GB team and the French team are the ones who make it to the last game. The carefulness of the two teams prolongs the match to another PK in the end. After the ups and downs between hope and despair, the honour of champion goes to the Great Britain team.
From the writer’s point of view, Copa America Taiwan’s value lies in being the oppurtunity for both the Latin American community in Taiwan and the locals who are interested in getting to know more about the continent on the opposite side of the world. To the Latin American community, the event serves as not only a cultural festival but also a networking venue; while for the locals, the activity provides the landscape of a culture that is not often seen in Taiwan.
Hopefully in the future, with or without a helping hand from the government, Copa America Taiwan can carry on bringing the vigorous Latin American culture to the little isalnd on the other side of the globe.