For the first time, the Riocentro – the new home of the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ Organising Committee (LOC) – hosted the six-weekly board meeting featuring representatives of the LOC, FIFA and the federal government. Following the get-together, the officials present took part in a press conference.

The main issue on the agenda was the state of preparations for the FIFA Confederations Cup Brazil 2013, in particular the announcement that the number of host cities for that competition will be confirmed on 8 November in Sao Paulo.

Jose Maria Marin, LOC President:
We’re working at an intense pace to guarantee that the FIFA Confederations Cup, which we call the Festival of Champions, will be spectacular both on and off the pitch. A FIFA Confederations Cup is the best invitation we could send to the world ahead of the FIFA World Cup, one year later.

We’re closely monitoring the stadia by means of technical reports and detailed chronograms. It’s important to underline that test events are necessary in order to guarantee the safety and comfort of supporters and players. In terms of promoting the Confederations Cup, the biggest moment will come this year during the draw on 1 December in Sao Paulo, when we’ll welcome 1,000 people to the Anhembi [Convention Centre]. As far as the Arena Pernambuco is concerned, I’m confident this stadium will be among the six host venues in 2013. I’d also like to wish ‘get well soon’ to the FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke, who’s been a great partner to us in the organisation of the FIFA World Cup in Brazil.

Bebeto, LOC Management Board member:
The success of the FIFA Confederations Cup will be our calling card ahead of the great FIFA World Cup we’ll host the following year. I’ve already won one edition of the FIFA Confederations Cup and so I know that it’s an excellent opportunity for players to stake their claims. That’s also true for Brazil as the host nation. The FIFA Confederations Cup will be the start of everything, for all the success that will lie ahead. Here we’ve had another very productive board meeting, where once again I’ve learned a lot by seeing how work is progressing. It’s a real pleasure to see how preparations are coming along. That said, we were very sorry to be without FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke, and we all hope he’ll be back to work soon.

FIFA Director of Communications and Public Affairs Walter de Gregorio:
On the health of FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke
FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke has been admitted to hospital in Rio de Janeiro with a kidney infection. Doctors have said that he is responding well to treatment.

On the draw for the FIFA Confederations Cup Brazil 2013
Our next big step forward is the draw for the FIFA Confederations Cup on 1 December, to be held at the Anhembi in Sao Paulo. Some 1,000 people will be present at the venue, which has a floor area of 100,000 m². The delegations of the seven teams that have already qualified have confirmed they will be attending. The team representing Africa will be decided at the start of next year.

On Recife
A decision will be made on the host cities of the FIFA Confederations Cup on 8 November in Sao Paulo, when the tournament’s ticket sales strategy will also be announced. We cannot reveal that information today because the decision hinges on the contents of the next technical report, which will use facts and figures to tell us if we have six venues for the FIFA Confederations Cup or not. It must be pointed out that test events are necessary to ensure that the stadiums can operate without a hitch. We need time to check and test areas relating to safety, transport and medical services, etc.

Brazilian Minister of Sport Aldo Rebelo:
It was another very productive meeting. We received updates on the FIFA Confederations Cup and the FIFA World Cup, and the government and the Ministry of Sport both made clear their commitment to working in close conjunction with the LOC, FIFA, the states and the city councils to ensure that the country meets its responsibilities in preparing for and organising both events.

On Recife
The initial indication is that six cities will be used for the FIFA Confederations Cup: Fortaleza, Recife, Salvador, Brasilia, Belo Horizonte and Rio de Janeiro. The final decision will be made at the start of November and until that decision is made we are working on the assumption that there will be six stadiums. As regards the progress of work at the Arena Pernambuco, the government’s monitoring reports show that the state government and the constructors are putting in a major effort. The Arena Pernambuco is a stadium that has come along at a very fast pace and, if that pace is maintained, there is a statistical chance that it will be ready before the FIFA Confederations Cup.