Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 10 July 2014

FIFA: Beer rights must be enshrined in law

The Belfast Telegraph World Cup fans Gallery

Beer must be sold at all venues hosting matches in the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, football's governing body has insisted.

Jerome Valcke, the Fifa general-secretary, said the right to sell beer must be enshrined in a World Cup law Brazil's Congress is considering.

Alcohol has been prohibited at football stadiums since 2003 in an attempt to tackle violence between rival fans, and the Health Minister wants to maintain the ban.

But the US brewer Budweiser is one of Fifa's big sponsors, and the World Cup organiser is frustrated because voting on the new law has been held up in Congress by the row over alcohol sales.

Speaking in Rio de Janeiro during a tour of World Cup venues, Mr Valcke vented his frustration with Brazilian officials.

"Alcoholic drinks are part of the World Cup, so we're going to have them. Excuse me if I sound a bit arrogant but that's something we won't negotiate," he said. "The fact that we have the right to sell beer has to be a part of the law."

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