Too soon to tell if World Cup will be delayed, say Brazil 2014 chiefs

Frank Dalleres
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A DECISION on whether the timetable of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil will be affected by the fatal stadium construction accident in Sao Paulo on Wednesday has been delayed until next week.

Governing body Fifa said it was too soon to measure the structural damage caused when a crane collapsed onto the unfinished Arena Corinthians, killing two workers. The 65,000-seater arena is due to host the tournament’s opening match on 12 June and five other games, including a semi-final.

“It is too premature to make any detailed assessment as we are still awaiting the technical report to be able to evaluate the scale of the damage,” Fifa said. “We will be able to provide an update earliest next week following the Fifa Organising Committee of the Fifa World Cup.”

A delay to the stadium’s completion appears inevitable, with Fifa having previously stipulated that all new venues be finished by the end of the year.

But there is thought to be scant chance of its fixtures being moved to another venue. Fifa’s annual congress in Sao Paulo coincides with the opening match so moving locations is undesirable, while there are no suitable alternatives in the country’s biggest city.