Blatter: Brazil must speed up WCup preparation
FIFA President Sepp Blatter urged Brazil on Monday to speed up
its preparations for the 2014 World Cup.
Blatter said Brazil’s project was ”not progressing very
quickly,” and lagged behind even where South Africa stood when the
successful 2010 host fell behind with its construction
”I must say that in comparison with the state of play between
South Africa and Brazil three years before the World Cup, Brazil is
behind South Africa. It’s a fact,” Blatter told reporters.
Referring to how little time remained, Blatter said ”it’s
tomorrow. The Brazilians think it’s just the day after tomorrow.
What they shall do is to give a little bit more speed now in the
Blatter said the slow progress meant Rio de Janeiro and Sao
Paulo could be left off the program for the 2013 Confederations Cup
which is designed as a test event for the 32-team tournament.
”The World Cup stadiums are still in the process of being
discussed between the city mayors and the state governors,” he
Blatter reminded that the qualifying draw for FIFA’s six
confederations is scheduled in July. Brazilian authorities still
have not agreed on a host city for the event.
Speaking at a Swiss government-backed media event, he expressed
optimism that a proven goalline technology system would be in place
Blatter also promised FIFA would have a zero-tolerance approach
to corruption and bad behavior on and off the field.
He outlined a new project for the FIFA Congress on June 1, where
he’s hoping to win election for a fourth four-year term.
”I will present something very special there but I will not now
disclose what is the content,” Blatter said. ”It’s to fight
corruption, all cheating and discrimination.
”We also want to appeal to players, coaches, referees to behave
on the field of play,” he said, adding that illegal betting and
matchfixing would be addressed.
Blatter acknowledged that Swiss public authorities had called on
FIFA to be more transparent after corruption allegations clouded
bidding contests for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups last year.
FIFA’s ethics panel barred two executive committee members from
voting, and suspended four other senior officials from duty. The
two voters, Nigerian Amos Adamu and Reynald Temarii from Tahiti,
have said they will appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport to
overturn their sanctions of three years and one year,
Blatter said the subject would be an important item on the
”We’re looking at our game. We want to be transparent when it
comes to activities that are, let’s say, forbidden,” he said.
However, Blatter said he had rejected requests from Swiss
authorities that members of FIFA’s judicial committees should be
nominated by people from outside football’s governing body.
The FIFA president suggested that the Swiss parliament and
cantons (states) would not accept having outside bodies choose
their legal officials.
”If it is valid for the government, it shall be valid for
FIFA,” Blatter said.