Brazil set to wow and win

Brazil set to wow and win
Beija Flor Rainha during a carnival in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil.

CUP IN SAFE HANDS

Brazil's victory over Spain in the Confederations Cup Final in June thrilled the 80,000 crowd at the Maracana Stadium, and nearly 200 million of their countrymen around the country.

All through the tournament, though, more than a million Brazilians took to the streets nationwide to demonstrate over the lack of spending in public services.

In the build-up to the final, an estimated 1.5 million Brazilians went on the march, protesting over how much money was being spent to organise next year's World Cup Finals and the Olympic Games in Rio in 2016, at the expense of education, transport and health services.

Brazil's Ambassador to Singapore, Luis Fernando de Andrade Serra, however, gave the assurance that the 2014 World Cup Finals is in safe hands.

Speaking to The New Paper last week, Serra explained that Brazilians are demanding better health services, transportation, education and less corruption.

"I think some of those issues are being solved and people are now giving credit to the government," he said. "Of course, the government needs time to improve these services.

"I don't believe that the events on the streets will be replicated during the World Cup.

"We are a peaceful country.

"I think Brazilians will stay at home (to watch the World Cup) or they will watch the matches in the stadia peacefully."

According to Serra, preparations across the 12 host cities for the World Cup are on track.

"Fifa was worried before the Confederations Cup, thinking that no stadium would be ready," said the ambassador, who was in Rio during the tournament.

"But the competition took place in six different stadia.

"Of course, there are six more stadia to be completed, but we are sure they will be ready for the World Cup.

"Jerome Valcke, secretary general of Fifa, even praised the progress of preparations recently. "At the beginning, he was the most critical authority. "The Confederations Cup was a test to see how the stadia work, and it was a success all around."

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