Brazil federation refutes Blatter’s WCup criticism

The Brazilian football federation has refuted criticism from

FIFA President Sepp Blatter over delays in preparations for the

2014 World Cup, saying the country is on track to successfully host

the tournament.

Federation president Ricardo Teixeira says preparations are

going as planned, and is inviting Blatter to visit the country ”to

see the progress from up close.”

Blatter says Brazil’s project is ”not progressing very

quickly” and even lags behind South Africa, which fell behind with

its construction schedule for last year’s tournament.

Teixeira said in a statement Tuesday he was surprised to hear

the criticism because Blatter lauded the preparations after a

meeting with the local organizing committee in Zurich earlier this

month.