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World Cup - worries for fifa ahead of draw as building work falls behind

With the spotlight firmly on fifa ahead of Friday's draw fro the World Cup Groups the news that three stadiums being built for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil will not be ready for the deadline of the end of the year is hardly ideal.

Arena Pantanal in Cuiaba, Curitiba's Arena da Baixada and Sao Paulo's Arena Corinthians stadium are all set to miss the 31 December date.

Two workmen were killed in an accident in Sao Paulo last month.

"We're feeling sad for the families. Sao Paulo will be ready for the opening match," president Sepp Blatter said.

"We deplore the loss of the two people who lost their lives."

Blatter added that the issues with the stadiums are "so small we can close our eyes".

The 43,000-seater Arena Pantanal, where a plan for a retractable roof has been abandoned, and the 41,000 Arena da Baixada are also behind schedule.

But Fifa general secretary Jerome Valcke says they will all be ready by February.

Valcke said: "We don't know when the green light [to resume work] will be given [in Sao Paolo].

"We are not in a crisis mood, looking at an alternative to Sao Paulo but Curitiba is facing the most problems and clearly won't be delivered before February 2014.

"The people from Curitiba attended a meeting [on Monday] and promised to organise themselves to get the stadium ready by the end of February 2014."

LK

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