16 May 2013

Backtrack on Sau Paulo stadium from FIFA

11:36 am on 16 May 2013

Football's governing body FIFA has backed down from its warning that 2014 World Cup matches could be moved away from Sao Paulo, saying it was out of the question to stage the tournament without South America's biggest city.

FIFA's secretary general Jerome Valke earlier warned that the Brazilian city may lose the right to stage any World Cup matches next year, because of delays in building work on its stadium, saying they won't accept any failure to meet December's deadline for completion.

But he toned down his comments after visiting Rio de Janeiro's Maracana, which will stage the World Cup final next year.

Valke now says a World Cup without Sao Paulo is out of the question, adding that he was due to hold a meeting with stadium owners Corinthians in the next few days.