Slowly, mixed-raced players started to filter through to the big clubs. They were made to feel ashamed of their colour. Artur Friedenreich, the son of a German immigrant and a black Brazilian,  looked white apart from his frizzy hair. Before matches he tried to flatten his hair as much as he could, covering it in brilliantine and rolling a towel around his head like a turban. He was always the last on the pitch. Most famously, Carlos Alberto, the son of a photographer and the first mulatto to play for Fluminense, whitened his face with rice powder. When his make-up started to come off the opposing fans started to chant “Rice Powder”, which became, and still is, the club’s nickname. To this day Fluminense fans throw talc – a cheaper version of the original powder – in the air before big games.

Alex Bellos, “Futebol: The Brazilian Way of Life”.

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