And finally… Corinthians to build cemetery for club’s eternal ‘Faithful’
Fans of Brazilian club Corinthians will soon have the chance to spend eternity near their greatest idols after the club confirmed it was building its own cemetery.
The Sao Paulo club’s supporters - dubbed ‘Fiel’ or ‘Faithful’ - are to be rewarded for their devotion to the ‘Timão’ when the club builds the 70,000-plot cemetery, expected to open in late 2015.
Due to be named Corinthians Forever, the development is divided into three different areas for different prices ranges. The most expensive area will be towards the middle of the cemetery, where a full-size replica of a football stadium is being erected and spaces are being saved on the pitch for some of the stars of the Corinthians football team to be buried there when the time comes. Fans will get a chance to be buried close to their favourite star with prices ranging from around £350 to over £2,000.
The subject of two documentaries, the supporters are also named ‘Bando do Loucos’, or ‘The Crazy Gang.’
Corinthians holds the second largest fanbase in Brazil, with around 25 million fans throughout the country - second only to Flamengo.
The club is also acknowledged as having the most influential Ultras group or torcidas organizadas.
The politically-charged Gaviões da Fiel number close to 100,000 while the non-politicised off-shoot ‘Camisa 12’ (The 12th Shirt) boasts over 15,000 members.
A third supporters group, Pavilhão Nove, can count more than 12,000 members.
Among the club’s notable former players are Socrates, Rivelino, Roberto Carlos and Ronaldo.
Fans can already start booking plots, the club has confirmed.
Corinthians will not be the first club to offer this kind of service. Boca Juniors and Schalke are already offering fans the opportunity to be buried in club-owned cemeteries while Barcelona have created a mausoleum where fans can pay to have their remains stored. The scale of the Corinthians project, however, will make it special.
In addition to being buried close to their football stars, fans will be able to buy a Corinthians burial package with a ceremony that includes flower arrangement in the black and white of the club colours, a coffin-sized Corinthians flag, and a choir singing the club’s official anthem.