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Horncastle: Totti thriving at 40

Italian Serie A
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Blatter: Stadiums will be ready

FIFA president Sepp Blatter is confident the stadiums for this year's Confederations Cup - including the historic Maracana stadium - will be ready for the warm-up event for the World Cup.

• Workers threaten strike

Construction is still ringing out across Brazil as work looks likely to continue right through to the competition's start date of June 15.

But an unworried Blatter told the BBC he was not surprised to find busy workers still buzzing over incomplete infrastructure, believing everything would be ready for the opening match of Italy versus Mexico.

"I have seen worse situations," he said. "Yes there is still work to be done, but it will get done.

"I have been to many tournaments when the painters are still painting the stadiums an hour before the first match. It is not a surprise to me that people are still working.

"It just means that something has not been finished and they need to finish it.

"Since I was first involved in 1978, I have witnessed a lot of problems like this, but when the tournament started, everything went well.

"Let us see. Let us hope this is the same,"

Brazilian Sports Minister Aldo Rebelo reacted angrily when he was posed the question that the Maracana may not be fully functioning for the Confederations Cup.

"The stadium was delivered and there were two test matches with complete success in the most absolute tranquility and security," Rebelo said.

"If what they are doing there is called major construction in your country, then frankly I pity the people of your country."

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