RIO DE JANEIRO, April 24 (Xinhua) -- Brazil's minister of sports, Olrando Silva, on Sunday openly criticized the city of Sao Paulo for its lack of preparations regarding the 2014 World Cup.
Silva cited that the delay in construction of Corinthians' new stadium as irresponsible. Corinthians and the city of Sao Paulo are in the dispute to hold the opening ceremonies and first match of the 2014 World Cup.
The minister added that Brasilia, Belo Horizonte and Salvador are also locations that are in contention to hold the inaugural match. Silva emphasized that FIFA will have the final say as to where the opening match will be held.
Corinthians previously issued a statement claiming that its new stadium will not be ready in time to host any of the matches during the 2013 Confederations Cup, warm-up tournament to the 2014 World Cup.
Silva cited that 70 percent of the construction projected in preparation for the 2014 World Cup will have begun in 2011. The delay in construction and preparation for the world's largest soccer event has caused the president of FIFA, Joseph Blatter, to condemn the holdups in Brazil.
Worried about the delays, Brazil's president Dilma Rousseff has scheduled a meeting with each of the respective governors and World Cup organizers in each of the host cities. The president hopes to encourage the speedy and successful completion of construction and preparation throughout country so that Brazil can pull off a triumphant World Cup in 2014.