The FIFA Confederations Cup is just two short months away, but host nation Brazil has yet to finish the main stadiums that will be used for the competition. While world soccer’s governing body demanded that the six stadiums that would be used in the competition be ready by December 2012, construction delays forced FIFA to push the deadline to this coming Monday. Yet despite the extra time, Reuters reports that only three of the six venues are currently ready.
Belo Horizonte, Fortaleza and Salvador have completed their stadiums, while Recife plans to open its Arena Pernambuco on Sunday, just one day ahead of the final deadline. The biggest problems are the Mane Garrincha National Stadium in Brasilia, the most expensive new stadium at a cost of $500 million, and the renovation of the storied Maracanã in Rio de Janeiro -- its third renovation in 12 years, costing a whopping $400 million. Brazil officials claim that all will be fine, but the Maracanã won’t be ready until April 27th at the earliest, and there are doubts it will be finished even by then.
Last week, FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke acknowledged that Brazil would not complete its preparations on time. "Not all operational arrangements will be 100 percent" for the Confederations Cup, Valcke wrote on FIFA's website. He warned that such delays would not be tolerated for next year’s World Cup. "The deadline for the FIFA World Cup stadiums delivery stands firm as December 2013. There will be no compromise.”