POSTED: March 27th 2009

Rogge waits on 2012 football

Wembley: undisputed venue for the 2012 Olympic final / lake images
Wembley: undisputed venue for the 2012 Olympic final / lake images

KEIR RADNEDGE / Sports Features Communications

DENVER: Jacques Rogge remains confident that Britain will put out a “solid” football team at the 2012 Olympic Games in London.

The issue of the British team remains a confused issue because of the opposition to participation by the ‘home’ football associations of Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

Rogge, president of the International Olympic Committee, refused to comment on a reference from within Scottish football that the Olympic football event was a “Mickey Mouse tournament.”

However, he said: “The situation of the home unions is a complicated one but discussions are still ongoing and I hope we will see a good and solid British team. How will be composed and with which football associations is up to the British to decide.”

The likeliest outcome is that the team in a competition restricted to under-23 players will be made up of English footballers under the control of the Football Association.

Olympic roundup

On other issues: Rogge said that IOC finances were “well under control . . . very heartening” with reserves of $405m and that he had been very pleased with the record Beijing Olympic audience of more than 4.3bn TV viewers worldwide.

This represented a 19pc increase including a significant increase in the engagement of the 12-24 age group which had seen steady slippage since Barcelona in 1992.

Anti-doping: Rogge said that the process of achieving anti-doping compliance among Olympic federations with the World Anti-Doping Agency was progressing well and he called on more national federations and governments to sign up to the associated UNESCO treaty.

Also on doping issues, Rogge said the results of the retested Beijing samples were expected inside three weeks but he could not offer hope of a decision soon on the medal distribution from the women’s 100m in Sydney which was still the subject of appeals to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

China: Rogge responded to a question doubting the legacy of the Beijing Olympics by pointing to a United Nations report on environment improvements and considered the change in perceptions from both inside and outside the country as positive.

European Union: Rogge reviewed ongoing meetings with representatives from the European Union and European Commission over the contradictions between sports organisation and employment laws.

Ski-jumping: Rogge insisted he was ready "at any time" to meet Canadian ski-jumpers who had threatened to go to law to force the inclusion of a women's competition at Vancouver in 2010. However he added: "We have great faith in the Canadian legal system."

Keywords · IOC · International Olympic Committee · Rogge · football · London 2012 · WADA · China

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