SAO PAULO (AP) — Brazilian organizers have held test events at two of the problematic World Cup stadiums, including the one hosting the tournament's opening game next month in Sao Paulo.
Nearly 20,000 people attended Saturday's exhibition between past and present Corinthians players at the Itaquerao stadium, which remains under construction and will not hold a full test event until next weekend.
In the southern city of Porto Alegre, about 35,000 Internacional fans saw their team beat Atletico Paranaense 2-1 in a Brazilian league match at the Beira-Rio Stadium. It was the last test event at the venue hosting five World Cup matches.
FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke said recently the Itaquerao and the Beira-Rio were among the stadiums still causing concern, along with the Arena da Baixada in the southern city of Curitiba.
The Arena Pantanal in the wetlands city of Cuiaba, where a constructor worker died last week, also is yet to be finished with just a month before the World Cup opener between Brazil and Croatia on June 12.
The Beira-Rio has already been officially inaugurated, but the construction of temporary structures needed for the tournament has been delayed.
The exhibition at the Itaquerao took place as workers continued to install the 20,000 temporary seats needed for the opener.
"For a first event, it was very good," said former Corinthians president Andres Sanchez, who is in charge of the stadium's construction. "We had some problems, but we will continue to make adjustments. For the World Cup it will all be 100 percent ready."
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