Manaus pitch worries England

England will send a member of their backroom team to inspect the pitch at the Arena Amazonia, which hosts the clash with Italy on Saturday, after the head groundsman admitted the surface was "in bad shape".

Last Updated: 12/06/14 at 10:58 Post Comment

The Amazonia Arena was constructed especially for the World Cup

The Amazonia Arena was constructed especially for the World Cup

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Parts of the surface look noticeably dry and rutted, doing little for either the pitch's aesthetics or the confidence of the teams who will have to play the high-pressure match there.

"Frankly Manaus is in bad shape," said Carlos Botella, the head groundsman of the Royal Verd company which is responsible for looking after the pitches at several World Cup venues.

"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 grass."

Botella blamed access issues to the relatively remote stadium, as well as recent heavy rainfall.

"The maintenance has been complicated in Manaus. There are no roads, all the machinery and materials had to be brought by ship," he said.

"There's no fertiliser, no seeds. Everything has been complicated."

There have also been concerns raised over the readiness of the stadium amid reports of loose power cables and unfinished plastering.

Both sides will train on the pitch on Friday, but England striker Wayne Rooney said his team would not be looking to the state of the pitch as any kind of excuse.

"It's the same for ourselves and Italy so we'll just have to deal with it," said Rooney.

The stadium will also host three other World cup games: Cameroon v Croatia; United States v Portugal and Honduras v Switzerland.

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

f he can find the right player? Surely the manager of one of Europe's top clubs has a well-researched short-list and has a good idea of who he wants to bring on-board? If I can find the right player sounds like someone going out on Saturday night on the pull, and the nearer you get to midnight the lower your standards drop.

CamberleyGooner
Wenger to buy centre-half

C

an someone point Brenda towards the real premier league table rather than the imaginary table in Brenda Land

bludsucker
Rodgers still targets top four

P

lease, please 365 can you find out what he drinks and let me know?

citymanofoz
Rodgers still targets top four

Footer 365

Transfer news: Inter Milan reveal interest in Liverpool midfielder Lucas but not Tottenham's Aaron Lennon

Inter Milan have dismissed reports they want Tottenham winger Aaron Lennon during January, but admit Liverpool's Lucas is a target.

Scottish Championship: Chairman David Somers says Rangers 'living beyond their means for years'

Rangers chairman David Somers claims a number of 'legacy issues' from previous boards have contributed to the current financial state of the club.

Arsenal: Arsene Wenger will buy a centre-half in January

Arsene Wenger will buy a centre-half if he can find "the right player" and says he has no qualms about spending money.

Mail Box

Wenger Has Made Arsenal Mentally Weak

We have plenty of reaction to yesterday's result, with Mailers sick of Wenger, Mertesacker and Skrtel in particular. Plus why it's not yet time for 'Austin for England'...

More Players In The Wrong Bloody Shirt

Plus Cristiano Ronaldo, who looks 'heart-breakingly well-suited to a Real Madrid shirt' according to one United fan. Plus, words from the good doctor and plenty more...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property