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Brazil Is Not Ready For The World Cup

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We are just over 70 days away from the tournament and finally people are starting to admit that Brazil may not be ready.

Friedemann Vogel

FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke has finally admitted that Brazil will likely not be ready for the start of the tournament in just over 70 days, with several venues still under construction.

The stadium in Porto Alegre and the opening game venue in Sao Paulo are still under construction. The opening game is due to kick off in Sao Paulo on the 12th of June.

There is "no way" that fixtures will be postponed.

"If you want me to summarise, we are not ready. We have two stadiums where there is still work to do," he said.

In total eight men have died while working on construction at World Cup venues splattered around Brazil, including three that have unfortunately died in Sao Paulo. The delays caused by the deaths have put the stadium behind schedule. Although that clearly just hides the cracks, why were there three fatalities, what could have been done to prevent them and why has the planning and construction been so poorly planned from the outset?

Porto Alegre were finding it very difficult to finance certain amenities at their stadium and some high profile officials did briefly entertain the idea of pulling the stadium from World Cup contention, however Valcke has confirmed that funding has been arranged:

"For Porto Alegre, an agreement was made between the different parties in the city to make sure the temporary facilities would be financed, so it is now more the implementation of these decisions.

He went on to talk about the situation in Sao Paulo. Regardless this tournament has been extremely poor in terms of preparation, financing and construction. However we have said it a million times, if you want to hand prestigious tournaments all around the World, you need to have a clear idea, plan with clear financial backing, all set to a timescale that allows some wiggle room. Brazil I'm sure will host a great tournament, but being 70 days away from the tournament and having two stadiums incomplete, well that's appalling.

"In Sao Paulo, it's sad because a worker died a few days ago and the result is that the work has been stopped inside a stadium where there are a number of things to do."

Valcke, who visited Brazil last week, added: "There is no way we can postpone the opening game. We have a match schedule and it will go until 13 July so there cannot be any delay.

"Maybe there will be things which will not be totally ready at the beginning of the World Cup but the most important thing for the 32 teams teams is the training camp and fields, all of this will be there to ensure you have football.

"Then we have to make sure television can get the international feed [of games] and we have to have all the telecommunication systems in place for the media, all the structures you need when you move from a normal stadium to a World Cup stadium.

"You have no choice, you have to make sure that if you are not getting 100% you have 99.99% and that's what we are working on."