FIFA’s Jerome Valcke warns Brazil’s World Cup cities
FIFA general secretary Jerome Valcke has issued a warning to Brazil’s host cities ahead of a key visit to the country at the weekend.
Valcke will arrive in Brazil on Sunday with the aim of assessing the readiness of venues ahead of this year’s World Cup.
"None of the 12 cities can afford to sit back and relax. There's still plenty of fine-tuning to be done," wrote Valcke in his column on the FIFA website.
Five of the 12 host stadiums remain under construction, including the São Paulo venue due to stage the opening match on June 12.
The stadium most behind is schedule in Curitiba’s Arena da Baixada. FIFA is said to be exploring alternatives to Curitiba should its stadium fail to be completed on time and a final decision on the city's involvement will be made on Tuesday.
The likeliest alternative would see the four matches scheduled for the Arena da Baixada shared around Brazil's 11 other host venues.
"We are closely monitoring the works in Curitiba in order to assess the situation there. We will communicate the final decision to the teams, as promised, on 18 February."