Team GB plan pre-Olympic friendlies in Birmingham
Thursday 27 October 2011
Britain is planning to mark its return to Olympic football after a 40-year absence with a gala double-header featuring both the women's and men's teams playing international friendlies at the same venue on the same day next July.
The FA, which is organising the Olympic teams on behalf of the British Olympic Association (BOA), is looking at staging the matches at Villa Park, as Birmingham is not an Olympic venue city, shortly before the Games begin at the end of that month.
Under IOC rules, the matches have to take place outside London and at a venue not being used for the Olympic tournament, which rules out Old Trafford, Hampden Park and the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff.
A British men's team last competed in the Olympic qualifiers as an amateur team for the 1972 Games but did not reach the finals in Munich. The women's team will be competing for the first time. The matches would be one of two pre-tournament friendlies for both sides, which are being managed by Stuart Pearce and Hope Powell respectively.
The formation of the Olympic teams has been problematic as the football associations of Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland remain reluctant to take part fearing the participation of their players could jeopardise their independent status within Fifa. However, their leading players are expected to be available.
Latest in Sport
Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea top the list of the Premier League's most expensive squads
Mario Balotelli scored as many goals for AC Milan on second debut as he did for Liverpool in the Premier League last season
Cyprus vs Wales match report: Gareth Bale's bullet header has Welsh on brink of Euro 2016
Jose Mourinho: Chelsea manager has four Guinness World records hanging in his office
Sir Alex Ferguson: 'I place discipline above all else and it might have cost us several titles...' but Manchester United boss wouldn't change it
- 1 What marriage would look like if we actually followed the Bible
- 2 President Obama leaves touching comment on Humans of New York photo from Iran
- 4 The Chinese city where men have 'three girlfriends because there are so many women'
- 5 'Heartbreaking' Syria orphan photo wasn't taken in Syria and not of orphan