Major sport events have important effects on fans´ well-being. Chile won its very first international football contest – the Copa América tournament – in July 2015, playing against Argentina. Thus, we explored the impact of the Chilean victory on Chileans’ subjective well-being (SWB), using a natural intervention setting. We extended the previous literature in three ways. First, we used more comprehensive measures than previous research. We collected measures of global SWB, evaluated SWB and experienced SWB. We also measured national identification with the Chilean team. Second, previous research has been conducted only in the Western world, whereas we studied a South American context. Third, and finally, we followed the same participants before and after the final. Most longitudinal research in the field has used cohort designs, but no panel data. The results showed that (1) a victory in a major sport event, which generates so much expectation from fans, induces high emotional activation effects and changes the levels of experienced SWB. However, our results show that it is also necessary (2) to analyze separately the cognitive and emotional SWB components, and (3) to assess different time frames after the match. For example, whereas evaluated SWB showed stable patterns of increase from pre- to post- game, global SWB and experienced SWB showed different results depending on the proximity with the final of the tournament. Similar results were found regarding the effects of national identification on SWB. Key implications about the importance of major sport events for people’s SWB are discussed.
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