Making a visit to the Home of FIFA in Zurich on Tuesday, Brazil’s Minister of Sport Aldo Rebelo enjoyed a productive meeting with executives from world football’s governing body and the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ Organising Committee (LOC).
Afterwards the participants spoke about the topics that came up for debate and the next steps to be taken as the preparations for the FIFA Confederations Cup Brazil 2013 and the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil continue. Here is what those present had to say:
FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter
There are a lot of important aspects when it comes to organising a World Cup, and Brazil will organise this one well. However, the World Cup and the Confederations Cup are taking place tomorrow and the day after tomorrow. Brazil is a perfect country for a World Cup. It has an unbelievable amount of popularity and has a great chance to present itself internationally. But it’s a responsibility that we share with Brazil and the government. Without the possibilities of the government and without guarantees it would be impossible to organize. The organization is not only in one city; it’s a collective effect that happens in many Brazilian cities. The most important thing is to be able to feel the after-effects long after the World Cup has finished. The last World Cup to be held in South America was in 1978, with 16 teams. Now there are 32 teams and 64 games, and that requires organisation and logistics. We all have to work together.
Brazilian Minister of Sport Aldo Rebelo
We took stock of the activities involved in the preparation of the World Cup, the responsibilities of the government, the LOC and FIFA, and the progress being made at the stadiums, mobility projects and areas such as security and telecommunications. I think we can take a largely positive view of the efforts being made and the commitment of the Brazilian government to doing everything within its power to stage a World Cup that meets the expectations of the organisers, Brazil and the entire world. What we need is a lot of hard work, discipline and dedication, and those are qualities neither the government team nor the organisers are lacking. We are all determined to make this work count and stage the best World Cup of all time.
Chairman of the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil Organising Committee Jose Maria Marin
It was a productive meeting because it showed that the Brazilian authorities and people linked directly to football are all working towards the same objective when it comes to the 2014 World Cup. Because of that we have complete faith that Brazil will show the world it has the ability and the capacity to organise a great World Cup. We are united, we are engaged in an ongoing dialogue and we are going to be together in every sense in visiting the stadiums, holding meetings and exchanging ideas. The Brazilian authorities and FIFA understand each other perfectly. As today’s meeting showed, they are on the same wavelength. It was a meeting in which we discussed a number of problems as frankly, seriously and realistically as possible. That’s why I am absolutely convinced that the stadiums will be ready, the infrastructures will be ready and that the people of Brazil will see their dream of our country hosting the World Cup for the first time since 1950 become a reality.
FIFA Secretary General Jérôme Valcke
The main aim of the meeting was to bring together this group formed by the government, FIFA and the LOC for the first time and to tackle in an open and transparent manner the challenges we face and all the work that has to be done for the Confederations Cup – to be held in less than 400 days – and the World Cup, which takes place in 25 months. As far as FIFA is concerned, we have to make sure that everything is in order in the 12 Host Cities in terms of infrastructure for the fans, the media and the representatives of the associations when they come to Brazil, and also for the people of Brazil when they come to the stadiums. We will have hundreds of thousands of tickets on sale. We need to make sure that in the little time we have left we can find immediate answers to the questions we have. That was the main thing we agreed on today. We will be working together towards that goal and it’s a message that the LOC, the government and FIFA are agreed on.
LOC Management Board member Ronaldo
Today we have all restated our commitment to ensuring that the LOC, FIFA and the government work together as one to stage the best World Cup of all time. We have also created a seat on the Committee for a representative from the Brazilian government so that they can monitor the organisation process from within the LOC. Luis Fernandes (the Executive Secretary of the Brazilian Ministry of Sport) has already been chosen to fill this position. It is our hope, therefore, that things will be a lot clearer and open between us from this point onwards and that we can move this project forward more smoothly. We are going to follow our project schedule and monitor them, but the main thing is to ensure everyone involved is together and that there’s greater understanding between us, the idea being to find speedy solutions to all the problems we have to deal with.
LOC Management Board member Bebeto
We need to ensure complete integration between FIFA, the LOC and the Brazilian and state governments. Through unity comes strength. For me personally it’s an honour to be here, and I feel just like I did when I was selected for Brazil the first time. I never had the pleasure of playing in a World Cup on home soil but as a member of the LOC I have an opportunity to contribute towards one of the best World Cups in history. Brazil is a construction site at the moment and that’s a legacy that we’re going to be leaving to the people. And it won’t just be a material legacy either, but a social and educational one, providing proof to the world that we can stage major events. I often use the 1982 World Cup as an example because Spain changed after that. Now we need to show what’s been done, all the work that we’re doing alongside FIFA.