As we inch ever closer to the beginning of the FIFA World Cup in Brazil, the focus of the world should be celebrating the best of the best that the beautiful game has to offer in a month-long promotional piece for the host country.
Instead, the host country is currently behind in the construction of half of their stadiums while workers are being killed due to the unsafe working conditions. Factor in the lagging upgrades to the infrastructure as well as the citizen protests towards the amounts of money being spent on this tournament, and it seems like the positives coming out of Brazil are few and far between.
The most recent negative in the Brazil camp is that one of the stadiums may have been damaged worse than originally reported; that stadium being the Arena Pantanal in Cuiaba where fire broke out in a basement last October. Government and state officials overseeing the construction of the stadium have said since the beginning that the fire should not be of great concern, though that statement was refuted by an independent judicial body who claimed that the stadium had suffered “structural damage.”
It just seems like this entire tournament will be overshadowed by all of the failures from before kickoff than the play on the field. Brazil should count their lucky stars that they have been as successful as they have been in past tournaments, because a country like Qatar would have the tournament moved in a heartbeat if they were pulling the same stunts as Brazil is pulling.
FIFA imposed a deadline to Brazil to have all of the stadiums ready for play by the end of the year in 2013 including six to be ready for the Confederations Cup last summer. While they made the deadline for the six original stadiums, they still have five that are still under construction less than four months before the first kick. Sadly, it looks as though the fans can expect this sort of thing to continue as long as Sepp Blatter is still making decisions for FIFA.