FIFA official criticised for Brazil W. Cup remarks

Brasilia: FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke was not completely wrong when he criticised Brazil`s lack of preparations for the 2014 World Cup, but he did exaggerate the problems, said one of the organiser`s sternest home-based critics.

Valcke had on a visit to Moscow on Friday issued a scathing assessment of Brazil`s 2014 World Cup preparations, saying the future hosts still lacked stadia, airports and transportation.

However, Rodrigo Prada, director of internet site which has been a fierce critic of the organisers, said that whilst there were problems they were not as serious as Valcke had claimed.

"Valcke is both right and wrong," said Prada.

"One cannot deny that there are delays on the building of the infrastructure, but one has to be more objective in ones analysis.

"The biggest problem is that the stadia are in the process of laying their foundations.

"It is difficult to explain to people that a stadium is in the process of being built when they see nothing. His analysis is biased."

Prada conceded that there was no denying that work had started late, but added that part of the blame lay with FIFA.

"Brazil was chosen as hosts in 2007, and the whole package of work and investment was only put together in February this year.

"That delayed the works.

"However, FIFA have no-one in place to follow the pace of the work. So we don`t know on what basis Valcke based his comments on."

Prada said that FIFA had also played a part in work being delayed.

"We have witness accounts from architects who have filed complaints because FIFA presented up till last week new changes in the planning projects.

"These reforms have resulted in new delays."

Valcke is not the first to raise the alarm over the slowness of the preparations, his boss FIFA president Sepp Blatter having complained over the tardiness in March.

The Brazilian minister of sport Orlando Silva had acknowledged there were problems with the stadiums in Natal (in the north east of the country) and Sao Paulo in the south east.

Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff Depuis had summoned on May 31 the mayors of the 12 cities due to host matches, the state governors and several government ministers to assess the situation.

Following that Rousseff, who assumed power on January 1, took on full responsibility for the preparation work.

She also appealed to the private sector to modernise and oversee three airports (Brasilia, Sao Paulo, Campinas).

Prior to her appeal the Brazilian Research Institute had claimed that 9 of the 13 airports due to be modernised before the World Cup would not be ready in time.

Bureau Report

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