UK & World News

  • 6 June 2014, 9:19

Blatter 'Confident' World Cup Will Be A Success

Fifa president Sepp Blatter has insisted he is "confident" the World Cup in Brazil will be a success.

The build-up to the tournament has been hit by strikes and protests as well as worries that stadiums will not be ready in time.

But Mr Blatter told reporters in Sao Paulo, the city that will host the opening match on June 12: "We at Fifa, we are confident, it will be a celebration."

The city, where favourites and hosts Brazil will take on Croatia in the tournament's curtain raiser, was plunged into transport chaos on Thursday after a strike by subway workers.

Fifa's secretary general Jerome Valcke also struck a positive note.

"We have everything ready for June 12, we have the best base camps for the teams," he said.

"There are no risks for the opening weeks of the competition which are the most challenging because there are the most teams.

"We are in control, we have nothing to fear in the coming days."

Mr Blatter also said he believed the social unrest which has gripped Brazil in recent weeks and months will subside once the tournament begins.

"I'm an optimist," he said.

"After the tournament kicks off I think there will be a better mood."

The country's president, Dilma Rousseff, this week suggested Fifa was partly to blame for the construction delays and spiralling cost of the World Cup.

Ms Rousseff also promised fans travelling to Brazil would be safe in her country.

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