Cape Town - The groundsman responsible for the Arena Amazonia in Manaus has
conceded that the pitch is in "bad shape" ahead of England's World Cup
opener against Italy on Saturday.
Arena Amazonia in Manaus, Brazil (Supplied)
"Frankly, Manaus is in bad shape," Carlos Botella, head groundsman for the Royal Verd company, told the Associated Press.
“We’ve started to implement an emergency plan to try to save the
field and improve it as much as possible, but I don’t think it’ll be in
good condition by the weekend.
“Yesterday we put fertiliser, and we’ll increase the fertilising
process with biostimulants and seeds to try to get the most out of the
“The maintenance has been complicated in Manaus. There are no roads,
all the machinery and materials had to be brought by ship,” he added.
“There’s no fertiliser, no seeds. Everything has been complicated.”
In addition to this weekend's clash, the Arena Amazonia will also
play host to the fixtures between Cameroon and Croatia, the USA and
Portugal, and Honduras against Switzerland.