World Cup terror fears

Sport Business News

FIFA is aware of fresh threats made by al–Qaeda to target the 2010 FIFA World Cup, but the governing body has insisted nothing will prevent the tournament from being staged in South Africa.

An Algerian wing of the group has claimed it will carry out attacks on England's Group C match against the United States on 12 June in Rustenberg, prompting new security fears less than two months before the start of the competition. However, FIFA has stressed that such threats can occur in any country and that tournament organisers are fully prepared. "It does not mean that because we receive a threat the World Cup should not be allowed to be contested in South Africa or any other country, " said FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke. "We have freedom in the world to celebrate what we want. As the management of the organisation that governs world football, we know there is a threat. We will not stop the organisation of the World Cup because we got the threat. We put in place all what we can in terms of security and we are working with this threat at the ministerial level and with security agencies worldwide to ensure that nothing happens in South Africa. Not only are we working with the participating countries, but with everyone who can help prevent attacks. "Valcke's comments came on the same day that the World Cup organising committee unveiled the official ticket for the first time. It was also confirmed that 2. 2m tickets have been sold to date over the four sales phases, with the final phase set to begin on 15 April. During this phase 500, 000 tickets will be available for 63 matches, the final excluded, and for the first time will be available over the counter. Valcke added: "This final ticket phase is very important. We will not want to give that picture of empty seats to the world. All will need to be done in these last days. We have made a big effort to assist football fans by introducing various additional means to purchase a ticket. "Danny Jordaan, chief executive officer of the organising committee, added: "We are excited about these new initiatives, which make the process much easier for everyone. We have always said that it is important that we make this World Cup more accessible to the people and with the over–the–counter sales, we believe this measure is consistent with the needs of the fans. "About The Sport Briefing This story has been reproduced with the kind permission of The Sport Briefing. The Sport Briefing is published by PA Sport and can be found at: www. thesportbriefing. comSubscribers to Major Events International can take advantage ofexcellent discounted rates for The Sport Briefing. Sign up now to receive a 20% discount on your annual licence for TheSport Briefing. Special rates are also available for company–widesubscriptions. Subscribers receive a daily digest or up to 30 stories from across every sector of the global sports industry, access to the 24–sevenwww. thesportbriefing. com website and a hard copy of the quarterlymagazine. For more information, email info@thesportbriefing. com or call +(0) 44 207 963 7888.

Additional information