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Poland fail to meet Fifa deadline

Poland risked suspension from all competitions and losing the right to co-host Euro 2012 after they missed a Fifa deadline of 1100 BST on Monday.

Fifa had demanded Poland reinstate their Football Association after it was suspended by the country's government and replaced by an administrator.

Fifa said on Monday it had received new information but awaited a full report.

Poland face being handed an automatic 3-0 defeat in their upcoming World Cup qualifier against the Czech Republic.

Uefa has threatened to take Euro 2012 away from co-hosts Poland if it fails to reinstate its Football Association.

Poland's arbitration tribunal suspended the FA (PZPN) last week and named an administrator after failing to address corruption issues.

But Fifa and Uefa have refused to recognise the administrator appointed to run the country's FA.

Uefa spokesman William Gaillard said on Friday: "The rules are clear. We offered Euro 2012 to the FA, not the government.

"So if the FA are not in place or suspended then they are not in a position to host the tournament."

Fifa has said it would ignore any correspondence from the newly installed board as the sport's world governing body's statutes forbid government intervention in football affairs.

And Gaillard added: "We are standing firm with Fifa. Our patience has limits and we are very close to the limit.

"If the FA is not reinstated by Monday's deadline then we will have serious discussions about the future of Euro 2012 immediately. We will not wait any longer."

Last week both Poland and Ukraine were given a reprieve after a report criticised their lack of progress in preparing to hold Euro 2012.

"We gave Poland another chance and then there was this coup on Monday. It is very annoying," stated Gaillard.

"We have done everything we can for Poland and Ukraine. We have bent over backwards to help them and this makes us very unhappy."

Poland, who are in the same World Cup qualifying group as Northern Ireland, could be handed automatic 3-0 defeats against Czech Republic and Slovakia.

A Fifa statement said further action would be considered when the executive committee meets in Zurich on 23-24 October, with Uefa's emergency panel scheduled to meet at about the same time.

Poland were threatened with being thrown out of qualifying for Euro 2008 when the PZPN was suspended in January 2007.


Not looking good. In the short term automatic losses to the Czechs and the Slovaks look possible and suspension from the World Cup isn't a small possibility either. Losing 2012 would be a massive blow; surely Poland won't let it go that far?

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Crisis averted...according to Sepp Blatter:

Poland settle dispute with Fifa

The Polish Football Association has settled a dispute with its government that threatened its right to co-host Euro 2012, says Fifa boss Sepp Blatter.

Fifa gave Poland a deadline of 1100 BST on Monday to reinstate their FA after it was suspended by the government.

Missing that deadline would have risked suspension from all competitions and losing their status as Euro 2012 hosts.

But Blatter has said that Fifa will not impose any sanctions on Poland if the agreement comes into force on Tuesday.

"We have received letters and documents that there has been an agreement between the FA and the Polish government," said Blatter.

"If this agreement comes into force tomorrow (Tuesday) it is sufficient for us. We will not impose any sanctions once the agreement comes into force."

The arbitration tribunal of the Polish National Olympic Committee suspended the FA (PZPN) last week after they allegedly failed to address corruption issues and named an administrator.

But Fifa and Uefa refused to recognise the new structure as they do not accept political interference in national associations, and the Polish National Olympic Committee must now withdraw the temporary administrator.

The Polish government has agreed to end its administration of the PZPN and adhere to a "roadmap" set up following a similar row in 2007.

Failure to comply would have meant Poland faced being handed automatic 3-0 defeats in their upcoming World Cup qualifiers against the Czech Republic and Slovakia, but those matches will now take place.

Uefa had also threatened to take Euro 2012 away from Poland - co-hosts along with Ukraine - if it failed to reinstate its Football Association.

That remains a possibility as Fifa says it will continue to "closely monitor the situation at the Polish FA and the implementation of the measures established in the roadmap".

The roadmap was created following discussions between the Polish FA, the Polish government, Fifa and Uefa and laid out the steps that should be taken before elections take place at the Polish FA.

The matter will be analysed and discussed at the next Fifa Executive Committee meeting on 23-24 October.


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  • 7 months later...

UEFA chose four cities in Poland to host matches at the 2012 European Championship on Wednesday but said tournament co-host Ukraine could wind up with only two venues unless it makes major infrastructure improvements in the next six months.

UEFA said Warsaw, Gdansk, Wroclaw and Poznan will host games, while reserve cities Krakow and Chorzow were both scratched.

Meanwhile, UEFA delivered a sharp warning to Ukraine by confirming only Kiev as a host city and holding off on previous plans to stage the final in the Ukrainian capital.

UEFA guaranteed Kiev group matches, quarterfinal matches and a semifinal. It said Kiev will only host the final if significant improvements are made by Nov. 30 on the city's Olympic Stadium, airport, infrastructure and hotels.

Three other cities in Ukraine — Lviv, Donetsk and Kharkiv — also have until Nov. 30 to prove they can make the massive upgrades to roads, airports, stadiums and hotels necessary to host matches.

"We've clearly set out the conditions Ukrainian cities must fulfill before Nov. 30 to host Euro 2012," UEFA president Michel Platini told reporters in Bucharest.

"We would like for the executive committee to have an equal division of cities between Poland and Ukraine. If Ukrainian cities cannot fulfill the conditions by Nov. 30, we will organize Euro 2012 with four Polish cities and the two best prepared Ukrainian cities."

The two Ukrainian reserve cities of Odessa and Dnipropetrovsk were both dropped.


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