Blatter praises Brazil for great World Cup
08 September 2014, 16:41
Manchester - FIFA president Sepp Blatter always believed this year's World Cup would not be affected by the civil disturbances that blighted the 2013 Confederations Cup in Brazil and he said he was delighted his prediction came true.
Blatter, 78, described the tournament on Monday as "great" and the "best World Cup" he had been involved in during an interview recorded for delegates at the Soccerex Global convention.
"It was, in my opinion, the best World Cup I have ever seen in the terms of quality of the football and the ambience it created in all the cities, in all the stadia .. Really it went under the skin," he said.
The build-up to the finals was dominated by widespread fears that the violence and riots that swept through 80 Brazilian cities during and after the Confederations Cup warm-up event in the summer of 2013 would be repeated during the World Cup and that the stadiums would not be ready in time.
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But Blatter said: "There was the question that the social unrest would start again but it was my feeling and my prediction that once the World Cup kicked off, the Brazilian nation would be fully in the game. And this happened.
"It was a great and bright World Cup.
"I was not worried about the stadium construction either because its my 10th World Cup working for FIFA and there's always a last minute problem to arrange something."
But he said he was surprised with the way Brazil's public stayed with their team even after they were crushed 7-1 in the semi-finals by eventual champions Germany.
"It was a surprise, but because they lost by such a high score there was no question as to who was the better team. I think if the result had been by penalty kicks or whatever, the reaction would have been different."
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He also praised the coaches for their approach to the games.
"We have to give compliments to the technical directors and the coaches because they played to win. In past World Cups they didn't want to lose," Blatter added.
"The players were well-prepared, they are all artists now. It was just great."
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