FIFA gives up on unfinished $40M arena in Thailand
FIFA executive committee member Worawi Makudi of Thailand, right, speaks Sunday, Sept. 18, 2011 with an official of FIFA Jaime Yarza prior to a news conference on the World Cup Futsal. (AP / Apichart Weerawong)
Published Tuesday, November 6, 2012 10:24AM EST
BANGKOK, Thailand -- FIFA has abandoned plans to stage the Futsal World Cup final next week at a showpiece $40 million arena in Thailand because it is unsafe after missing construction deadlines.
FIFA says it cannot compromise "such a fundamental issue" as security of teams and fans at the Bangkok Futsal Arena.
A pitch was installed at the 12,000-capacity arena after the tournament began last week but "the functionality of core services and facilities" was not completed.
FIFA says the Nov. 18 final and both semifinals of the 24-team tournament will be played at Indoor Stadium Huamark in Bangkok. Quarterfinals are rescheduled at Nimibutr Stadium.
FIFA has ditched Bangkok Futsal Arena after repeatedly extending deadlines which local organizers could not fulfil.
They blamed delays on heavy rain and flooding.