STADIUM TO DROP HAVELANGE NAME

Brazilian politicians presented a bill on Wednesday requesting the name of the Joao Havelange Stadium is changed to remove the former FIFA president's name.

Havelange quit as FIFA's honorary president last month amongst allegations he took bribes from the ISL sports marketing company while president of football's global governing body.

City councillor Renato Cinco, one of the proponents of the legislation, said: "The name Joao Havelange is today linked to fraud investigations and scandals at FIFA.

"It doesn't make sense for a city which is going to host the World Cup and Olympic Games have the name of its stadium with this reference."

The stadium, often known as the Engenhao but officially named the Joao Havelange Olympic stadium, was built for the 2007 Panamerican games but was closed for repairs in March after structural problems were found in the roof.

It is due to be used for the athletics events when Rio hosts the 2016 Olympics, although the opening and closing ceremonies will be at the Maracana.

The councillors have suggested changing the stadium's name to Joao Saldanha, who coached Brazil in the 1970 World Cup qualifying competition.

Posted on 09/05/2013