Football Notes: Brazil World Cup Stadium Symbolically Delivered On New Year's Eve
One of six Brazilian World Cup stadiums that had to be completed before the end of '13 "was symbolically delivered on New Year’s Eve," although it will not be fully ready until the end of the month. Organizers in the northeastern city of Natal "turned on the lights at the Arena das Dunas stadium for the first time on Tuesday to symbolize the venue’s completion." Brazil "starts the year without six of the 12 World Cup stadiums ready even though FIFA had set the end of 2013 as the final deadline" (AP, 1/2). ... Man City "will fly to Abu Dhabi to play a friendly and enjoy a week of warm-weather training following the Premier League fixture at Newcastle" on Jan. 12, provided there is no replay after Saturday's FA Cup third-round tie with Blackburn Rovers. While the break is yet to be confirmed, if Manager Manuel Pellegrini's squad does travel to the emirate, it will play against Al Ain on Jan. 14 "to open the Arabian Gulf League champions' new stadium, the Hazza bin Zayed" (London GUARDIAN, 1/2).