The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION
Posted: 06/12/2013 6:54 AM | Comments: 0
Last Modified: 06/12/2013 7:41 AM
BRASILIA, Brazil - Brazil arrives 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.
After facing difficulties getting its stadiums ready for the Confederations Cup, the warm-up tournament that begins in Brasilia on Saturday, Brazil is promising that things will be different ahead of the World Cup.
FIFA said it won't accept it any other way, and Brazilian authorities and local organizers say the delays that plagued construction work before the Confederations Cup won't be an issue next year.
Brazil just barely got six stadiums ready for the Confederations Cup. Only 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.
That was what happened in Brasilia and in Rio de Janeiro, home of the final at the renovated Maracana Stadium on June 30.
"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," Brazil Sports Minister Aldo Rebelo said. "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."
FIFA has already made it clear that Brazil will have to do a better job for the World Cup, when the expectations will be much higher and the number of visitors will increase significantly compared to the eight-team Confederations Cup.
The Brazilians said FIFA should not worry about the delivery of the remaining six stadiums being built for the World Cup.
"This first delivery was actually the hardest deadline to meet," Rebelo said on a conference call this week. "The evolution of the construction work of these (World Cup) stadiums ... indicates that, yes, they can and will be delivered in December (2013). We have been in close contact with the responsible parties for these stadiums to make sure that those deadlines are fulfilled."
The government said infrastructure projects which were not ready in time for the Confederations Cup will also be finalized by the World Cup.
"We have been monitoring transportation and urban mobility on a daily basis," Rebelo said. "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."
But not everybody is celebrating in Brazil as the World Cup approaches. There have been complaints because of the high costs of the stadiums and of the government's decision to suspend laws to abide by FIFA requirements.
And on Saturday, the day Brazil opens the Confederations Cup against Japan, Rio residents evicted because of World Cup and Olympic projects will stage what they call a "People's Cup," calling attention to what they say are human rights violations. Local organizers and government officials have said all evictions have happened according to law.
Later Wednesday, FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke and World Cup ambassador Pele were to participate at an event at Copacabana Beach marking one year to the World Cup.
Follow Tales Azzoni at http://twitter.com/tazzoni
Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories? Please use the form below and let us know.
Having problems with the form?Contact Us Directly
Body pulled from Red River near Lockport
Vote counting begins in Scotland on independence
Cost for Bipole III jumps to at least $1 billion more
Never-ending construction season
Suspected drunk driver, subdued by bystanders, still in hospital but facing charges
More details emerge on downtown stabbing
Witness: 21 killed by Mexico army had surrendered
Tenors to drop by News Café on Friday
Woman charged with aggravated assault after man stabbed, cop kicked
Dauphin hotel fire deemed suspicious
New infrastructure policies scarce at mayoral forum, tourism ideas abound
Fires near CMHR draw attention to aboriginal issues
Manitoba ER wait times higher than national average: CIHI report
Maurice promises 'an exciting, very aggressive brand of hockey'
Pallister pushes for spring election
Winnipeggers ready to Take Back the Night
Canadian Art Foundation honouring Wanda Koop with new fund
Pair facing more charges after fabricating a complaint against police
Final chapter in City Beautiful debuts Friday
Sanders takes aim at BIZ, Bowman
Two outlet channels for lakes could cost $450 M: Ashton
Harper will not attend opening of CMHR
Bones found on riverbank not human, police confirm
Tory MLAs challenge province on emergency Lake St. Martin channel
Owner of poisoned bees convinced it was "targeted attack"
Looking to the Red for answers, peace
Records: Man urged victim to kill self via webcam
British hostage appears in new video
Cost of satellite ministerial offices soar
Plenty of good weather for golf, yard work ahead
Arrests in Chile bomb attack focus on anarchists
Is a playoff berth realistic or do the Jets have too many unsolved questions?
Cougar killed in Calgary, no second cat
Air Canada joins WestJet in charging bag fee
Museum at dusk and dawn
Calling all carnivores
If New York can do it, so can we: Bowman
Winnipeg gets 'B' grade on attractiveness: report
Kill airport taxes: minister
Breivik's father feels guilt over son's dark path