Sao Paulo World Cup stadium delay upsets FIFA

IANS

Rio de Janeiro, May 9 (IANS) World football governing body FIFA admitted concern over delays in the construction of Sao Paulo's 2014 World Cup Stadium.

Earlier this week, the building firm responsible for the Itaquerao Stadium said the venue would not be ready until at least March next year, more than two months after the FIFA deadline, reports Xinhua.

"FIFA is concerned as it is vital that the firm deadline of December 2013 is kept," FIFA said in a statement.

"The host cities, federal government and stadium owners have committed themselves to this date and acknowledged that no compromises can be made.This is crucial not only for FIFA but for the entire host nation."

Itaquerao's developer Odebrecht is still awaiting a promised $200 million loan from state-run banks and has threatened to stop work if an imminent deal is not struck.

FIFA has set a Dec 31 deadline for the six stadiums not being used for the Confederations Cup in the cities of Sao Paulo, Manaus, Cuiaba, Natal, Porto Alegre and Curitiba.

Each of Brazil's six venues for June's Confederations Cup - considered an organisational warmup for the World Cup - long overshot their original deadlines of December 2012.

Brasilia's Estadio Nacional is still yet to be reopened despite being scheduled to host the Confederations Cup opener between Brazil and Japan, June 15.

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