Ten weeks before the World Cup, FIFA general secretary Jerome Valcke issued an ominous warning about Brazil’s preparedness to hold the event.
“We’re not ready,” he said.
The biggest concern is the Arena Corinthians (aka the Itaquerão) in São Paulo, which was supposed to open last December. The 68,000-seat arena is one of the centerpieces of the tournament. It’s scheduled to host the opening match on June 12 between Brazil and Croatia.
Construction has been delayed multiple times, mostly recently for the death of a construction worker last week.
A Reuters photographer visited the stadium on April 1, 71 days before the first game.
In some ways, it looks mostly ready to go. The grass is green, the lower bowl is full of seats, the bones of the stadium are in place, etc.
But there are also giant cranes in the middle of the stadium and the roof is half-built, not to mention the state of the area surrounding the arena.
FIFA says it will be ready. It still needs a significant amount of work.