Head coach Fabio Capello has confirmed the England team will be based at Phokeng near Rustenberg during this summer’s World Cup in South Africa.
Concerns were raised about the training pitches and bedroom suites at the Royal Bafokeng Campus, with work on the newly built complex still not finished.

But Capello, having inspected the site, said: “I’m really happy. We visited four places and this was the best.

“It’s the third time I’ve stayed here and the facilities are fantastic.”

And the Italian said he had also received assurances the camp would be completely finished in time for England’s arrival ahead of the tournament, which starts on 11 June.

“We checked everything and it has improved a lot from the last time we stayed here,” added Capello. “The pitches are good and will be better for June. The pitches and the centre we choose will be very important for us.

“The hotel is really, really nice and the medical centre will be ready in two months.”

Rustenberg was tipped as the England base by BBC Sport’s Simon Austin in September. The pitches are good and will be better for June. The hotel is really, really nice and the medical centre will be ready in two months
Fabio Capello

Capello was joined on the inspection by Fifa secretary general Jerome Valcke, South Africa 2010 chief executive Danny Jordaan, South African Football Association president Kirsten Nematandani and African Football Confederation president Issa Hayatou.

Based on what he had seen, Valcke was confident that the facility will be ready in time for England’s arrival and suitable for their needs during the tournament.

“At the time of the World Cup, the FA need the 68 rooms, the medical centre and pitches,” commented Valcke. “There are two which are being worked on by an Irish company who are experts in grass.

“The rooms are there – there is a welcome desk where you can pay, a breakfast area where you can eat. There was a television and internet in the room.

“We have been told the medical centre will be built on time.”

Such confidence was echoed by Jordaan, who said: “I went with Jerome Valcke and we had dinner and lunch there. It is fully operational and I have asked to go back there so we can see the reality. The hotel is complete.” SIMON AUSTIN BLOG
Capello is confident the Royal Bafokeng Sports Campus has ticked all the boxes and can be a fitting home from home for his side during the World Cup

It had been unclear whether Capello would be willing to trust Royal Bafokeng Holdings officials’ insistence that construction of the pitches remains “on schedule”.

But Niall Carroll, chief executive of Royal Bafokeng Holdings, stated: “We are confident that the campus will be ready and tested in time for the World Cup.

“Construction remains on schedule and the primary pitches will be comparable to that of the Bafokeng Sports Palace, rated as one of the best in the country.

“We continue to work closely with the Football Association, Fifa and [logistics organisers] Match and remain confident the Bafokeng Sports Campus will meet the highest standards in every area.”

England are set to use the facility in the build-up to the tournament and during their time at the tournament, which runs from 11 June to 11 July.

Fifa had wanted the list of training camps completed on Tuesday but those plans have been derailed by teams still changing their schedules ahead of the World Cup.

England’s Group C rival Algeria told Fifa on Tuesday they have decided to move to a new hotel complex.