Hodgson hopes Brazil’s ‘holy grail’ stadium is built in time for England

07:00 29 November 2012

The Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro prior to the rebuilding work. Photo credit: Matthew Ashton

The Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro prior to the rebuilding work. Photo credit: Matthew Ashton


England manager Roy Hodgson is “desperately hoping” the rebuilding of the Maracana will be completed in time for their friendly with Brazil next June.

The South American side are due to welcome Hodgson’s men next year in their iconic 7/8Rio de Janeiro stadium as part of the celebrations for the Football Association’s 150th anniversary.

However, the Maracana, which is due to host the 2014 World Cup final, is currently undergoing major reconstruction and there are questions whether the building work will be finished by the time England head there.

“It’s almost like a holy grail so I’m desperately hoping they get the pitch ready in time,” Hodgson told BBC1.

“But if they don’t it’s still a great game and I’m still more than happy to play Brazil wherever they want to play us.”

The fixture will provide England with the perfect opportunity to sample the playing conditions ahead of the World Cup should they qualify from Group H, which is not a foregone conclusion.

The Three Lions currently lie second in their group and face a tough trip to leaders Montenegro next year.

“The one thing I can assure all of the England football fans is that the players, there’s nothing they want more (than to qualify),” added Hodgson.

“They’d had have been more than happy to go and play a World Cup on the Galapagos Islands, let alone Brazil.

“I think if we got here then we would believe in ourselves, we would have a good chance.”

Related articles


Latest Newham Sports News

The Hammers made the London Stadium rock with a deserved victory to give Chelsea the Blues

Yesterday, 16:00

Switch from man marking to zonal failed to stop Hartlepool United scoring from a corner on Saturday

Fabio Liverani
Yesterday, 14:00

Essex Olympian League Premier Division outfit are in Essex Premier Cup action this weekend

Essex Senior League
Yesterday, 12:00

Ex-Burton Albion favourite thanks O’s fans for their support and expresses delight at playing again after suspension

Liam Kelly

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read sport


Show Job Lists


Cosmetics, toiletries, vitamins and more. Boots is the number one choice when it comes to purchasing daily essentials.

Read more

If you’re obsessed with Apple or just love a good gadget, this is a prize that will blow you away! An incredible £3,333 to spend on Apple goodies! How would you like to be the proud new owner of the Apple Watch?

Read more

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Newham Recorder
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now