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Last Updated: Wednesday, 2 May 2007, 14:30 GMT 15:30 UK
Blatter backs South Africa again
Fifa president Sepp Blatter
Sepp Blatter has once again given his backing to South Africa
Fifa President Sepp Blatter has said he has no doubts that the 2010 World Cup will take place in South Africa short of a natural disaster.

"It will take place in South Africa...I have no doubts. The plan B is South Africa, plan C is South Africa," Blatter said.

He added that he would publicly proclaim the world governing body's confidence in South Africa's ability to organise the event at Fifa's Congress from 29 May.

"Seven (South African) ministers will be there. I will confirm in front of the whole congress that South Africa will organise the World Cup," he told journalists.

Fifa's executive committee gave the South Africans their full backing in March, following months of doubts caused by initial delays in building work for new stadia and infrastructure.

However, Blatter touched off a controversy by pointing out in an interview Monday that there were fall back options for the World Cup in the United States, Mexico or Japan in the event of an emergency.

Blatter underlined that contingency plans existed for all major Fifa tournaments wherever they were meant to be held.

"We'll go to South Africa because they know how to do it, but we'd be badly off if there was a weather or natural disaster somewhere -- we have to be prepared," Blatter explained.

Fifa officials underlined that the 2003 Women's World Cup was held in Germany, replacing chosen host China at short notice because of the outbreak of the SARS respiratory disease in Asia.

China is hosting the event this year.

Similar plans have existed before. Countries earmarked as possible emergency hosts must have enough existing stadiums and infrastructure to handle the 32 nations, fans, TV and media coverage at short notice.

SEE ALSO
Fifa makes 2010 Cup back-up plan
30 Apr 07 |  Internationals
SA seeks to share 2010 World Cup
12 Apr 07 |  African


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