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Norway impress

The bid from Scotland and Ireland to co-host the 2008 European Championship suffered a setback yesterday when a rival bid won praise from a Uefa official.

Jurgen Muller, a representative from the sport's European governing body, commended the Norwegian stadiums that are part of the joint bid from Norway, Finland, Sweden and Denmark to host the event.

Muller started an inspection of Scandinavian facilities with a trip to Rosenborg's home ground, Lerkendal, and the national stadium of Ullevaal before heading to Gothenburg, Helsinki, Stockholm and Copenhagen. "The Nordic bid is both detailed and exciting," Muller said.

Muller and his team have already visited joint-bidders Switzerland and Austria, who are among the favourites to host the event. Other bids in the running are Russia, Hungary, Bosnia-Croatia and Greece-Turkey .

The Uefa executive committee will announce the decision on where the tournament will be staged on 13 December.