FIFA’s Executive Committee spent the past two days (March 20-21) in meetings discussing a number of important subjects relating to the game. One of the decisions that the committee had to make was finding a host for the FIFA U17 Women’s World Cup 2014.
The event was without a host after Costa Rica had informed FIFA that they would not be able to fulfill their hosting duties. That news was confirmed by FIFA in late February and they began the process of looking for a suitable replacement to host the event on short notice.
FIFA representatives were to look for alternative hosting options and present them to the Executive Committee at this month’s meetings so that a host could be determined in a timely fashion. With Costa Rica facing major delays in the construction of facilities for the event, it seemed that their hopes of hosting a major international event had been dashed.
Since the news of Costa Rica backing out of hosting the event, the country managed to successfully host the 2013 Central American Games which used several of the venues that were part of the 2014 U17 World Cup plans, including the Estadio Nacional. The event went off with very few problems other than a stray firework during the opening ceremony starting a small fire in the stadium’s roof.
Successfully hosting the Central American Games seems to have gotten Costa Rica back on track, as on Thursday in Zurich, Switzerland the FIFA Executive Committee concluded that Costa Rica would be re-appointed as the host for the FIFA U17 Women’s World Cup.
They made the decision having received new guarantees from the Costa Rican public authorities as well as a report from CONCACAF. It seems that Costa Rica has managed to put the delays in stadium construction behind them and are now back on track to be able to adequately host the event.
The 2014 U17 World Cup will be the fourth edition of the event and will mark the earliest in the year that the event has ever kicked off. Costa Rica now has less than a year to finish preparations as the event is set to kick off on March 15, 2014 and run until April 14.