England World Cup opener moved back three hours

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Football News

The first Group D match for England in the 2014 World Cup will now kick off at 11pm GMT after the time was brought back three hours from 2am.

The change will come as good news for UK and European viewers, as the 9pm local time kick-off has been moved by three hours to better suit European broadcast schedules. England’s match against Italy will now kick off at 11pm GMT and midnight Italian time.

Conditions in the tropical city of Manaus are expected to be tougher due to the earlier kick-off, and England manager Roy Hodgson has been calling for water breaks to combat the summer Amazonian heat.

Of greater concern for travelling fans may be the reports from the Manaus tourist board that warn of an ‘alligator risk’ at the later kick-off time.

Club England managing director Adrian Bevington has said he was in favour of the 2am GMT kick-off time due to the tropical conditions:

"Playing at 21:00 in Manaus is clearly helpful from our side and from a football point of view," said Bevington.

"We can't deny that it's better to play in Manaus later in the day."

However, the adjusted times will come as good news for those England fans remaining in the country for the World Cup, as well as for owners of bars and pubs who will no longer need special licenses to show the match.

England kick off their World Cup 2014 campaign against Italy on 14th June at 11pm UK time.

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