RIO DE JANEIRO, May 3 (Reuters) - FIFA criticised Brazil's
preparations for the 2014 World Cup on Monday with general
secretary Jerome Valcke asking if they would have to wait for
next year's Carnival before work starts in earnest.
"The red light has been switched on for Brazil which is not
meeting deadlines," Valcke told Brazilian reporters in South
Africa where this year's World Cup starts next month.
"It's incredible how late Brazil is, and I'm talking about
all the stadiums. A lot of deadlines have passed and nothing has
happened. Brazil is not on the right path."
"This year, there's a presidential election so almost
nothing will happen. Next year, Carnival comes along. So
everything's only going to start after Carnival?"
"It's necessary to make the most of the time available. We
don't want a rushed World Cup, with everything done at the last
Valcke said he had received a report earlier on Monday which
warned work was behind schedule at a number of venues.
"Brazil has been wanting to host the World Cup for a long
time but now it has to start moving. They have to do this for
South America, not just for Brazil."
"There's no point in just sending letters," he added in
comments widely quoted in Brazil on Monday. "Very little has
been done. It's time to act."
Five-times World Cup winners Brazil, which hosted the 1950
tournament, was awarded the event unopposed in 2007.
The 2014 World Cup was earmarked for South America under
FIFA's rotation system and Brazil had been considered almost
certain hosts since 2003 when the other nine South American
federations agreed at a meeting in Asuncion to back their bid.
During the run up to FIFA's decision in 2007, Brazil
concentrated heavily on its footballing past and achievements on
the field but gave little away about how it would deal with the
lack of infrastructure and soaring crime rates.
Brazil will host the 32-team tournament in 12 cities which
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