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Football | World Cup 2014

Time for Brazil to worry about fans - Valcke

Brazil, expected to receive around 500 000 visitors for the 2014 World Cup, was told to start worrying about the fans by Fifa on Monday.

Secretary general Jerome Valcke said everything would be in order for the teams but that the supporters should not be overlooked, especially when it came to getting around the vast country.

"It's not about the officials, the teams or Fifa itself. We have charter flights and accommodation for them, we have to think about the fans, we need these fans supporting their teams," said Valcke.

Brazil's domestic air network is already overstretched and many trips involve several stops and long detours through Sao Paulo. Road journeys between different regions can take several days over pot-holed highways.

In some cases, Valcke said fans would have to be flown in and out of venues on the same day because of a lack of hotel rooms.

"We have one city which I will not name where there are 17 000 rooms and 45 000 seats in the stadium, so the only other solution would be to have three people in one bed," he said.

"But we have now moved from talking about the problems to talking about the solutions. We are able to find and answer the problems."

Valcke caused an outcry in Brazil earlier this year when he criticised the slow pace of preparations and said the country needed "a kick up the backside".

He later apologised and the two sides have ironed out their differences.

"It is a question of maturity, age, understanding," he said. "We found a way to work together and that is the most important thing.

"We are not trying any more to fight, it is pointless

"A couple can get a divorce but in a World Cup partnership, you cannot divorce.

"Some times you lose control, and you say things and get nervous, and then you learn that patience is a good thing to have. At the moment, we are working well."


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