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FIFA puts Nigeria on notice
by Paul Kennedy, May 22nd, 2009 7AM



[UNDER-17 WORLD CUP] It looks like Nigeria will lose the Under-17 World Cup, which it is scheduled to host in the fall.

Following an inspection tour, Concacaf president Jack Warner, who serves as chairman of the U-17 organizing committee, said he would give local organizers a month to get all nine prospective venues ready.

Only two of the nine venues -- stadiums in Abuja and Lagos -- passed inspection.

Three other venues were dropped from consideration -- Bauchi and Kaduna, along with the stadium in Warri, which Warner's delegation could not visit because of security concerns in the Delta State region -- meaning that the four remaining venues -- Calabar, Enugu, Ijebu-Ode and Kano -- must pass muster.

"When the grace period expires, FIFA will return to visit the venues and if each and every one of them does not reach the 100 percent readiness level that we expect, then FIFA will withdraw the tournament hosting rights from Nigeria and go to another country," Warner said. "Frankly, from an objective point of view, Nigeria is not ready to host the tournament."

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