World Cup - Fears over Manaus pitch for England-Italy match

Pictures have emerged of the pitch in Manaus looking less than perfect ahead of Italy’s game with England on Saturday.

PA Sport
World Cup - Fears over Manaus pitch for England-Italy match

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The Amazonia Arena in Manaus

Just three days before England begin their World Cup campaign against Italy in Manaus, the pitch inside the stadium appears to be in a shocking state.

The grass looks incredibly dry and yellow marks stretch across the pitch.

England are due to land in Manaus on Thursday morning and the Football Association has confirmed that one England coach will be sent to the stadium to see how it looks.

England will train on the pitch on Friday, 24 hours before the Italy game.

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The surface was in pristine condition when manager Roy Hodgson visited the city in February, prior to a FIFA workshop.

The Arena Amazonia, which holds 39,118 people, was constructed last year at an estimated cost of around £173million.

In a change to their itinerary, Hodgson's squad will train at their hotel in Manaus on Thursday, rather than at the FIFA-allocated training ground.

The FA insists this is consistent with protocol following a long flight.

England's charter jet will take four hours to travel from Rio to Manaus, which is located in the north-west of the country.

Unlike England, Italy will travel to Manaus one day before kick-off.

Read the original article on Football Italia - The ultimate website for English-speaking fans of Italian football

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