Platini wants Spain at Euro 2008, but decision is with FIFA
Spain deserves to play at Euro 2008 and should be cleared by the ruling body FIFA to be at the tournament, European football supremo Michel Platini said on Wednesday.13 March 2008
VIENNA - Spain deserves to play at Euro 2008 and should be cleared by the ruling body FIFA to be at the tournament, European football supremo Michel Platini said on Wednesday.
But Platini also said the final decision on a dispute over government interference in Spanish football issues was with FIFA alone.
"I can give you two different answers. The first, it is FIFA's problem. It has to do with FIFA statutes in the first place, so FIFA has to take a decision in due course. Or it will make a decision at its next meeting of its executive committee on Friday.
"We are glad to have Spain play in the Euro. Spain plays great football, and we are convinced that Spain will play in the Euro and it will be just fine. But the decision is FIFA's and there will be a discussion on Friday," Platini told a news conference at a Euro workshop in Vienna.
FIFA boss Joseph Blatter said last month that government interference around the election date at Spain's football body RFEF violated the independence of football from politics.
Spain's government wants all non-Olympic sports to hold elections in the first quarter of the year, but the RFEF and its president Angel Villar have set the date for November.
Football federations have been suspended by FIFA in the past over government interference. If FIFA decide to do so with Spain, the national team would not be eligible to play at international competitions like the 7-29 June Euro in Austria and Switzerland, and clubs would be barred from events like the Champions League.
[Copyright dpa 2008]