Sat, April 24, 2010
Sports > Soccer

South Africa ready now, says FIFA's official

2010-04-24 07:03:22 GMT2010-04-24 15:03:22 (Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

JOHANNESBURG, April 23 (Xinhua) -- FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke on Friday said South Africa would be ready to host the World Cup finals tomorrow if necessary.

Taking part in a video link-up with FIFA president Sepp Blatter from Zurich, beamed to journalists in South Africa, Valcke was upbeat about the tournament which kicks off at Johannesburg's Soccer City on June 11.

"If the World Cup was to start tomorrow, South Africa would be ready to host it. There are still one or two issues to be sorted out, but overall South Africa, the stadiums and all the infrastructure are ready," he said.

According to the South African Press Association (SAPA), Valcke admitted that FIFA had made a mistake with their ticketing system for the 2010 World Cup.

Of the three million tickets that went on sale at the start of the ticket sales, there are 300,000 remaining.

In eight days after over-the-counter sales were introduced, a total of 200,000 were sold.

"We thought by limiting sales of tickets to four a person, we were on the right track. We realize mistakes were made and we will change the ticketing process at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. We are flexible and have learnt from our mistakes," he said.

At worst, 95 percent of tickets for the World Cup would be sold.

"We are still hoping to sell 100 percent, but at this stage we expect to sell at least 95 percent of the three million," said Valcke.

Valcke said the fact 200,000 tickets were sold in eight days gives us hope we will sell the remaining 300,000 in the next 10 days," he added.

Both semi-finals and final are already sold out.

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