100 days to World Cup: Brazil faces more pressure over preparation

It is only 100 days until the football's biggest party starts in Brazil and the pressure on the host country to step up its preparation efforts is mounting.

Four stadiums, including the one where England will play their first match, are yet to be finished, with construction works still under way in many of the host cities.

ITV News Brazil Correspondent Nick Ravenscroft reports:

It's not looking great for Brazil. Installation of vital equipment had to be pushed back in some of the stadiums.

Many of the airports where fans will arrive in just three months time are already over capacity and improvements that would help manage the crowds are also delayed.

Five of the host cities have abandoned infrastructure projects, such as new bus lines or underground.

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One consultant who has worked on the world cup stadiums across Brazil told ITV News that hold-ups could be deliberate.

"The more there is delay the more the government is pressured by FIFA to finish. The more likely it is that the government will bail-out the projects, which is good for the companies margins," the consultant said.

Brazil has always insisted that it is capable of holding large international events -- using the annual Rio de Janeiro carnival as an example.

This year's carnival finished on Tuesday and the football theme was a hit among the Samba schools, with dancers surrounded by footballs, former national players taking part and revellers parading huge football boots-shaped allegorical cars.

The Carnival parade in Rio de Janeiro reflects the World Cup excitement Credit: REUTERS/Ricardo Morae

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FIFA officials are not excited about Brazilian spontaneous, last minute way of organising things.

Meetings have taken place in the past weeks to urge Brazil to step up its efforts and the deadline to finish the stadiums was pushed back.

But FIFA's president Sepp Blatter says Brazil's problems are under control. "It will be an exceptionally good start for an exceptional competition," Mr Blatter said.

Last year's violent protests added to the uncertainty, sparking serious security concerns. Brazilian police is training for more potential clashes during the World Cup.

Brazil's riot police practice crowd control with simulated protesters Credit: REUTERS/Sergio Moraes

Many Brazilians think the money spent on the showpiece event would be better used improving hospitals, schools and infrastructure.

And opinion polls show that more than half of Brazilians do not want the World Cup to be held in their football-mad country.

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