Confederations Cup

Calls for late starts at SWC

2013-06-26 21:00
Alvaro Arbeloa (Getty Images)
Fortaleza - Spain defender Alvaro Arbeloa believes matches at next year's World Cup should kick off in the evenings to spare players from the damaging effects of heat and humidity in Brazil's stadiums.

Spain play Italy in the Confederations Cup semi-finals at 16:00 local time (21:00 CAT) in Fortaleza on Thursday, when temperatures are forecast to reach 30 degrees Celsius.

While Spain's 2-1 group-stage win over Uruguay kicked off at 19:00, their games against Tahiti and Nigeria both started in the afternoon, and Arbeloa said he and his team-mates felt the effects.

Asked if games at the 2014 World Cup -- which will also take place during the Brazilian winter -- should start in the evening, the Real Madrid full-back said: "For me, it's an emphatic yes.

"I think it would be much better to play at seven, just like the game against Uruguay.

"It would be better for the fans."

Midfielder Sergio Busquets agreed that the conditions were problematic, but said he did not believe the weather would be a significant factor against Italy.

"Regarding the temperature and the humidity, the conditions aren't ideal, but it's the same for both teams," said the Barcelona midfielder.

"Hopefully the Nigeria match will be useful as we'll know what we're up against and we can use it against Italy.

"I don't think it'll have any impact on the match though."


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