Brazil Marks One-Year Until 2014 World Cup, Vows It Will Be Ready
Brazil arrived at the one-year mark to the World Cup on Wednesday "admitting to mistakes in its preparations but vowing to get its act together in time," according to the AP. After facing difficulties getting its stadiums ready for the Confederations Cup, "Brazil is promising that things will be different ahead of the World Cup." Brazil "just barely" got six stadiums ready for the Confederations Cup. Two of them were completed by the original deadline in December, and in some cases there was time "for only one test event before the venues hosted official matches" in the tournament for continental champions. Brazil Sports Minister Aldo Rebelo said, "I do believe we could have delivered them sooner to allow for the realization of more test events, which could have anticipated some of the problems that arose during those test events. Apart from that, I believe that all requirements were executed in accordance with expectations and that we will have a Confederations Cup that will be held as expected." Brazil's government said that "infrastructure projects which were not ready in time for the Confederations Cup will also be finalized by the World Cup." Rebelo: "We have been monitoring transportation and urban mobility on a daily basis. These works will be delivered in time, together with the next six stadiums. Airport, security, telecommunications and urban mobility will be ready and compatible with the expectations held by the country and by the world" (AP, 6/12).
BLATTER OPTIMISTIC: FIFA President Joseph Blatter said that he is optimistic that Brazil will be ready to host a quality World Cup when the event gets started next summer. Blatter: "I am a happy president because we're only one year away, which marks an outstanding milestone. Brazil, with 200 million people and the sixth-most important economy in the world, is like a continent, a power not only in football but also economically. I am convinced that one of the legacies of the World Cup will be its contribution to Brazil also becoming a power in the field of social and cultural values. In football there are no differences or social classes" (LA AFICION, 6/12).