Marta is one of the greatest players in the history of the women’s game. (Getty Images)

The president of FIFA is concerned about the state of women’s football in Brazil.

Sepp Blatter expressed his worries in a column in FIFA Weekly, triggered by the 2014 FIFA Men’s World Cup host’s absence from the upcoming U-17 Women’s World Cup in Costa Rica.

“The women’s game in the home country of one of the best women’s players in history, five-time World Player of the Year Marta, is battling a tendency towards decline,” wrote Blatter, “especially at junior levels.”

Blatter points out that, in contrast to many of the leading nations for the women’s game, there is no professional league structure in Brazil.

“It’s no surprise Marta was obliged to leave the country at the tender age of 18 and spend her entire career playing abroad. It’s no surprise the most promising Brazilian talents are forced into this step.”

He says Brazil has “a vast amount of catching up to do” in this regard and that the establishment of a women’s league “has to be on the agenda” as the World Cup approaches.

 By INSIDER’s Nick Devlin

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