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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Jan 21, 2010

Maradona impressed by security

Argentina coach Diego Maradona is confident the World Cup in South Africa will be safe and secure.

Maradona met with Danny Jordaan, the chief executive of the local organising committee, in Johannesburg today and revealed he was impressed by the work done to date, with the finals kicking off on June 11.

South Africa has had to contend with many sceptics questioning its ability to hold such a prestigious event and highlighting the level of crime in the country as a potential problem.

However, Maradona has no such concerns for his team and said: ''They can say what they want but we know we are coming to play the World Cup in a safe country.

''I have seen that with my own eyes. Anything can happen in the world but I have spent a week in South Africa and everything is very good and the people very friendly.

''This will be a great World Cup with no doubts of security. I will tell my players that they only have to think of playing football when they come here and worry about nothing else.

''I think that it is only fair for South Africa to host the World Cup because they have deserved it for a very long time.''

Maradona and Jordaan then had a look around the Soccer City stadium in Johannesburg, which will host the opening match and the final.

''They really did a great job on this stadium (Soccer City),'' Maradona added. ''I have been to many stadiums before but this is very big and so great. To be able to enter this stadium is so beautiful. I feel inspired to play here but unfortunately my time has passed.''

Maradona arrived in South Africa on Monday to inspect the Argentina World Cup base camp at the High Performance Centre in Pretoria.

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