South Africa is Not Ready to Host the World Cup – According to FIFA

FIFA World Cup - South Africa

It has come to light that South Africa is not ready to host the 2010 World Cup just over three months before the tournament kicks off  according to FIFA, football’s world governing body. FIFA’s secretary general, Jerome Valke, told a news conference on Tuesday that the main venue in Johannesburg, Soccer City, was yet to be completed, and that 700,000 tickets were still unsold. “If the question is: ‘Could we host the World Cup tomorrow morning?’ the answer is no,” Mr Valke said. “I can make a list of things that aren’t ready for the World Cup.” This is the first time that an official of FIFA official admitted that everything is not going as planned for South Africa.

The country is the first ever host of the tournament on the African continent. Just last week FIFA had slashed the prices of some unsold VIP tickets in the hope of selling them to South Africans rather than overseas fans. “This was a promise that Sepp Blatter, the FIFA president, made to the South African government,” Valcke said. The specially-priced tickets for South African residents, called Category-four seats, are being sold at 140 rand ($18.21). Valcke also said that  11 per cent of stadium capacity was currently made up of category-four tickets and Fifa hoped to increase this to 20 per cent for most games at the June 11-July 11 finals. “We will do our best to get up to 20 per cent for most of the matches but we will not discount any ticket prices and we’ll not give any tickets away. There will never be a free ticket for the World Cup.” He said he expected ticket sales to cover the $423m budget for organising the World Cup in South Africa. “We are trying at a difficult time for the world,” he went on to say.

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6 comments

  1. Ed

    Another HUGE MISTAKE by the ANC Government & its cronies, I hope its an utter disaster, without much loss of life – but hey its only soccer players who cares anyway.

  2. Today marks 100 days until the Fifa world Cup kicks off in South Africa. According to latest reports this morning from Sepp Bletter and SA deputy President Kgalema Mothlanthe, South africa is ready to host the Fifa World Cup. Furthermore, the tickets not sold relate to the games in which SA team Bafana Bafana are playing in.

    Ed, hoping that its an utter disastr, that surely cannot be an African perspective for if you are indeed African then you will be sharing this momentous occassion with us. And, you would also feel the hype, excitment and optimism that South Africans are feeling ahead of the event.

    This is Africa’s chance to shine and we will. And, yes, South Africa may have its challenges but if you go back into our history you”ll also note that sport has been used to reconcile people and unite…. a suggestion: watch the movie: Invictus…

    Proudly South African…

  3. Appu Babu

    Things are not bad as many of the american and european meadia are projecting about the rediness of South Africa to host the Foot ball World Cup 2010.
    I am Indian working in South Africa and hence I am not biased on my views whether SA is ready for the event or not. But I can feel the genuine interest and enthusiasm in the South African residents from helping out tourists to volunteering for the World Cup related events. If ever a country is ready to host this event outside Europe or Americas, it has to be South Africa. Football needs to spread across the globe and not be just restricted in the Europe and Americas. Come and feel the passion of the SA about the event. Its what they have been dreaming for years.
    I do not agree to most of the media accusations that SA is not ready and the facilities are not upto the mark. They are infact damn good to host the event and even comparable to many european countries. Give some breathing space to this hard working country men and they do deserve all the koodos for the hard work they have put in. My heart goes with them and their passion.
    Atleast for the love of Football, lets join together and support South Africans to make this a grand success.

  4. Millard Sauce

    Hasn’t Brazil won the World Cup 5 times? And aren’t they the only team to have played in each tournament.

  5. Lindsey

    It’s so extremely funny to read an article like this 5 months after the best world cut ever. The comments are even funnier.

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