Stadium delays seem to be altering ticket availability, which determined World Cup fans and FIFA management to believe that the problems could affect the smooth running of the event. As a result, FIFA has announced that they are withholding seven percent of tickets until May, when it will be known for sure how many seats there are in each stadium. World Cup will debut in just two months, but FIFA officials are so worried about the outcome of this event, that they even threatened to take away the city of Curitiba’s host duties. For now, Arena Corinthians in Sao Paulo has been facing build-site failures and Curitiba’s Arena de Baixada is behind schedule.
Although World Cup begins on June 12, the event’s biggest problem is that stadium delays alter ticket availability, because FIFA management has decided to hold back thousands of tickets until the stadiums are ready. Brazil has failed to meet FIFA’s imposed deadlines on some of the venues, which determined the international association’s marketing director Thierry Weil to express his frustations regarding the shortcomings. Since the World Cup happens once every four years and FIFA is counting on the number of tickets sold to make profit, the current situation is hardly convenient. However, the unfinished stadiums are not the only problem: construction projects like roads and airports are also well behind schedule.
What FIFA Needs
The International association wanted all 12 stadiums to be ready by December 2013, but only six met the deadline. FIFA officials expressed their concerns, especially since the ones that were ready were used last summer for the Confederations Cup tournament. The event begins in approximately two months, but threen of the remaining stadiums have not been completed.
As a result, since the World Cup’s biggest problem is represented by the stadium delays which alter the ticket availability, Weil has decided to hold a last-minute sale once the stadiums are finished. For example, the venue which will host the opening game between Brazil and Croatia, Sao Paulo’s Arena Corinthians was supposed to seat 48,000 fans, but 20,000 seats will be added after the constuction is complete. Weil stated that “at some point in May more tickets will go on sale with the completion of the stadiums.” In addition to Arena Corinthians, stadiums in Cuiaba and Curitiba are also incomplete, and the latter should receive an additional 27,000 seats.
FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke visited Sao Paulo’s stadium and concluded that “it will be a very tight schedule over the next weeks,” not just to complete it until June 12, but to be able to test it. Another problem he noticed during his visit was that telecommincation companies that are currently working with the organizers of the World Cup 2014 had asked for 120 days to install networks and make them function on the six new facilities. However, organizers gave the enterprises only 70 days to solve the problems and improve the event’s coverage. Valcke also stated that fixing the networks is highly important, since journalists must “get their stories out to the rest of the world.” Sao Paulo vice mayor Nadia Campeao agreed that there is plenty of work that needs to be done in two months, but although the schedule is tight, “it’s all doable.”
Stadium delays that alter ticket availability are the World Cup’s biggest problem, and although FIFA president Sepp Blatter is optimistic about the event, there are 200,000 seats that are put on hold. So far, 2.7 million tickets have been sold and 58 percent of them were bought by Brazilian fans.
By Gabriela Motroc