SAO PAULO (AP) — Rio de Janeiro club Botafogo is threatening to get out of its contract to use the Olympic stadium, which was closed last week because of a faulty roof.
Botafogo, which took over the Joao Havelange Stadium after the 2007 Pan American Games, is considering ending its deal with the city because of problems at a venue which is due to host the athletics events at the 2016 Olympics.
Club officials will be meeting with city authorities this week to try to avoid ending the contract, but former Botafogo president Carlos Montenegro told local media that "there is no solution" and it's better for the club to relinquish its right to use the venue.
Italy's national team may also be affected by the stadium's closure, as it was planning to train there ahead of the upcoming Confederations Cup. Italy is now considering other options, including using Vasco da Gama's smaller Sao Januario Stadium or going to another city before it debuts against Mexico at the Maracana on June 16.
Italy was also planning to play a friendly against Honduras at the Joao Havelange, which is known locally as the Engenhao. The Italians will train in the northeastern cities of Recife and Salvador ahead of their second and third group matches at the World Cup warm-up tournament.
Botafogo reportedly said it is has already lost a naming rights deal because of the stadium's closure and is losing a lot of money because of the matches transferred from the Engenhao.
"There is no solution," Montenegro told local media. "It needs to be turned over to the city."
Rio Mayor Eduardo Paes said last week that the timetable to fix the venue will depend on studies being conducted to evaluate its condition and find the best solutions.
In addition to the roof problem, which forced Paes to hastily announce the venue's temporary closure last week, other infrastructure problems have been found at the Engenhao, including some on its hydraulic and electric systems.
AP Sports Writer Andrew Dampf contributed to this report from Rome.