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Football in 2016

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Well, I'll be blowed, looks like the FA wants to try to send a team to Rio after all....

The English FA has pledged to enter men’s and women’s Team GB teams for the Rio 2016 Olympics, despite opposition from the Welsh FA.

The FA’s decision to try to qualify a men’s under-23 team as well as a women’s team for Rio has provoked a backlash from its Welsh counterpart, which believes it has not been fully consulted.

It had been assumed that the entry of a GB men’s team into the London 2012 Games was a one-off designed to capitalise on a home Olympics.

On his final day in the job, the former FA general secretary Alex Horne is understood to have written to the other home nations to inform them the FA would enter a team in the Rio Games. Horne had said, after London 2012, the FA would not seek to enter a men’s side in 2016 but would keep the matter under review for the women’s team. In order to qualify, England must finish in the top four of the men’s under-21 tournament in the summer, while for the women’s competition the top three European teams in the 2015 World Cup in Canada will qualify.

The English FA holds the final say over whether to enter a British team because it acts as the national governing body representative for the British Olympic Association, having been a founder member in 1908. Before the London Games, which featured a combined team for the first time since 1960, there were fears from some of the other home nations that entering a British side could open the door for Fifa to challenge the idea of having separate sides.

But following written confirmation from Fifa president Sepp Blatter that there was no risk to the privileges enjoyed by the home nations, eventually the Welsh and Scottish FAs grudgingly accepted there was little they could do.

Stuart Pearce’s 18-man squad, which exited to South Korea in the quarter-finals, ultimately contained five Welsh players - Ryan Giggs, Joe Allen, Aaron Ramsey, Craig Bellamy, Neil Taylor - but none from Scotland or Northern Ireland.

Under Olympic rules, the under-23 squad can be augmented with three over age players. Alongside well as Giggs and Bellamy, Micah Richards was included in 2012 at the expense of David Beckham.

One intriguing sub-plot may surround whether or not the manager of the side, most likely to be Gareth Southgate if they qualify, would opt to pick Gareth Bale or other overage players that may cause issues with their clubs.

Some clubs may also have concerns over releasing players due to commitments with close season overseas tours.

Previously, it had been assumed that while efforts would be made to again qualify a women’s team given the boost in exposure that an Olympics would bring, the notion of entering a men’s side was off the agenda.

But FA technical director Dan Ashworth and under 21 coach Gareth Southgate were understood to be enthusiastic about the idea of trying to qualify, believing it will give young players valuable tournament experience.

England’s coach Roy Hodgson has pledged to work with Southgate to make players available if selected, even if they have already progressed to the senior squad.

The Olympics football tournament has always been taken seriously by many other nations, particularly in South America and Africa, and the feeling at St George’s Park was that it will be a useful extra element of ongoing efforts to better co-ordinate the England development sides and senior team.

It is part of a plan that also includes staging the European under-17 championships in 2018 and efforts under Ashworth and Southgate to introduce a common footballing philosophy across all England teams.

A BOA spokesman said: “We have received confirmation from the FA of their intention to enter into the qualification process for Rio 2016 for both men and women’s tournaments.”

While the men’s side limped out of the London 2012 tournament on penalties, the competition was seen as a major staging post in promoting the women’s game. The British side beat Brazil at Wembley in front of more than 70,000 fans before also going out in the quarter-finals to Canada.

The Welsh FA’s disgruntlement with its English counterparts – for taking the decision without its approval – is compounded by changes to the way in which the seat on the Fifa executive committee, formerly reserved for the home nations, will be filled.

Under the old system, it was filled on a rotational basis and it would have been the turn of Wales next. But now the position is voted on by the Uefa executive and David Gill, the former Manchester United chief executive, has been persuaded to stand.

http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2015/mar/02/team-gb-olympic-games-2016-rio-games-fa-wales

Edited by Rob.

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Well, I'll be blowed, looks like the FA wants to try to send a team to Rio after all....

http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2015/mar/02/team-gb-olympic-games-2016-rio-games-fa-wales

Wonder if they will have better luck trying to arrange this than last time?

In the wake of the recent Scottish referendum, I fear that the separate FAs are even more nationalistic than ever and hence even more determined to preserve their separate identities. Yielding for the Olympics might prove the thin end of the wedge for some of them!

Edited by Mainad

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Wonder if they will have better luck trying to arrange this than last time?

In the wake of the recent Scottish referendum, I fear that the separate FAs are even more nationalistic than ever and hence even more determined to preserve their separate identities. Yielding for the Olympics might prove the thin end of the wedge for some of them!

I'm not sure about that. However, I wasn't aware of this fact when we were trying to form an all-nations team for 2012:

"The English FA holds the final say over whether to enter a British team because it acts as the national governing body representative for the British Olympic Association, having been a founder member in 1908."

So the FA is actually in the driving seat here. It sounds to me as though the FA is set on entering a team and would like the involvement of the other home nations, but unlike in 2012, is not so bothered if they decline. Of course the SFA declined in 2012, so they will again for an Olympics which isn't on home soil, but whether the others are persuadable we'll have to see. Whatever the case, it sounds like the FA are set on trying to qualify men's and women's teams for Rio, which is great (especially for our women players).

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FIFA confirms football venues for Rio 2016 Olympic Games

The Rio 2016 Olympic Games football tournament will take place in six cities: Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Salvador, Manaus, Brasília and Belo Horizonte. The football co-host cities were confirmed after a meeting of FIFA’s Organising Committee for the Olympic Football Tournaments in Zurich, Switzerland, where it was decided that the Rio 2016 football matches will be staged at: Corinthians Arena (São Paulo), the Maracanã and Olympic Stadium (Rio de Janiero), Arena Fonte Nova (Salvador), Mané Garrincha Stadium (Brasília), Amazônia Arena (Manaus) and the Mineirão (Belo Horizonte).

Further details about the Rio 2016 football tournament will be confirmed by FIFA and the Rio 2016 Organising Committee for the Olympic Games in the coming days.

...

Rio2016

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FIFA confirms football venues for Rio 2016 Olympic Games

The Rio 2016 Olympic Games football tournament will take place in six cities: Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Salvador, Manaus, Brasília and Belo Horizonte. The football co-host cities were confirmed after a meeting of FIFA’s Organising Committee for the Olympic Football Tournaments in Zurich, Switzerland, where it was decided that the Rio 2016 football matches will be staged at: Corinthians Arena (São Paulo), the Maracanã and Olympic Stadium (Rio de Janiero), Arena Fonte Nova (Salvador), Mané Garrincha Stadium (Brasília), Amazônia Arena (Manaus) and the Mineirão (Belo Horizonte).

Further details about the Rio 2016 football tournament will be confirmed by FIFA and the Rio 2016 Organising Committee for the Olympic Games in the coming days.

...

Rio2016

Wait I thought Manaus was not going to be used for the tournament because it was too far away???

Well put Great Britain there since they love it so much and give the area so much praise! :P

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Wait I thought Manaus was not going to be used for the tournament because it was too far away???

Well put Great Britain there since they love it so much and give the area so much praise! :P

Sorry, but:

FIFA+IOC>UK

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UK, ironically, won't have a football team in Rio 2016

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UK, ironically, won't have a football team in Rio 2016

Not true. It's being discussed.

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FA: No Great British teams in Rio

(PA) 31 Mar 2015

The Football Association has expressed disappointment after deciding not to enter Great Britain teams for the Men's and Women's Olympic Football Tournaments after opposition from the other home nations.

The FA had told Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland it was intending to enter teams for Rio de Janeiro, but was met with resistance. An FA spokesman confirmed the plan has now been dropped, saying: "After careful discussion, The FA has decided not to enter either a women's or a men's team into the Rio Olympics 2016.

"We are disappointed not to be able to go ahead, given the fantastic opportunity it would have afforded the players and the broader exposure it would have brought to the game in our countries."

It was made clear that all four home nations would have to agree before the plan could be ratified. In light of that, the FA's director of football services Jonathan Hall contacted the other British associations on Monday to inform them it had decided to drop the plan.

FIFA vice-president Jim Boyce said last week: ''I was given an absolute categorical reassurance from FIFA that unless full agreement could be reached between England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, there would be no GB team participating at next year's Olympics.''

http://www.fifa.com/mensolympic/news/y=2015/m=3/news=fa-announce-no-great-british-team-in-rio-2580776.html

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Time to take away the independent status of the home nations football programs. This is just insane.

Rubbish, Time to get restore some trust in FIFA so the other home nations don't feel their existence threatened every time this simple idea is proposed.

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Rubbish, Time to get restore some trust in FIFA so the other home nations don't feel their existence threatened every time this simple idea is proposed.

Well, that's probably not going to happen with FIFA's current leadership group in place.

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Rubbish, Time to get restore some trust in FIFA so the other home nations don't feel their existence threatened every time this simple idea is proposed.

I would argue there is no threat to their existence.. they just don't want to see England represent GB.

But the bigger issue is what is the point of their existence? Presumable *to compete* on the international stage. If they can't get their acts together and compete, what's the point?

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I would argue there is no threat to their existence.. they just don't want to see England represent GB.

You might be right, you might not. But sorting FIFA out will be a good thing anyway. And if FIFA becomes a trustworthy organisation again, it won't matter whether the threat was real, an excuse, or paranoia as it won't be there anymore. Then, hopefully, we can get a team in future Olympics.

I tend to believe they genuinely think the threat is real. But if it is merely an excuse or a nationalistic stubborness as you suggest, then they should be ashamed. Not so much for the men, but for the women's team, and indeed the Paralympians for whom an Olympics is a big opportunity. I would hope the Scottish and Welsh FAs would have their players' interests in mind first and would only dig in over this issue if they felt a real threat coming from certain people within FIFA.

I would argue there is no threat to their existence.. they just don't want to see England represent GB.

But the bigger issue is what is the point of their existence? Presumable *to compete* on the international stage. If they can't get their acts together and compete, what's the point?

Whilst I'd love Team GB to be represented at the Games and London 2012 not to be a one-off, Olympic football isn't a priority. For the most part this story will go unnoticed in the sports pages this week, the Euro qualifiers for Euro 2016 being the most important thing.

England v Scotland and England v Wales are two of the oldest international fixtures, the teams have their own National Stadiums, support, traditions. We don't really want to lose that and there's no good reason to do so.

So your suggestion that not being able to come to a compromise on the Olympics means we should scrap the home nations is kind of bizarre.

That said, we're on the same page in wanting to see a Team GB at the Games. Other sports manage it, football should be able to too.

Edited by Rob.

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Shame, especially on the women's side where Olympic Football is arguably the main showcase.

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And now, partially due to the FA's decision not to send teams to Rio, both the German women's and men's teams are qualified for Rio! While our women's team has only reached the quarterfinals of the World Cup in Canada yet, this is already sufficient for Olympic qualification because Team England advanced to the quarterfinals, too, and since it is not eligible for Olympic qualification, only Team Netherlands (which still has to play its round of 16 match tonight) can catch the remaining third UEFA Olympic qualifying ticket directly by reaching the next round in the World Cup, besides Germany and France, the other two European teams remaining in the World Cup. A bit complicated. ;)

And since tonight, the men's U21 team has the Olympic ticket in its bag, too, after reaching the semi-finals of the U21 European Championships in the Czech Republic.

This is a historic first - a German men's team had its last Olympic appearance in Seoul 1988, at a time when female teams weren't part of the Olympic programme yet. So we'll have a double chance of winning a football medal next year, in a country we have fond football memories of (naturally). ;)


And, of course, this is great compensation for London 2012, when neither the German women's nor the men's team managed to qualify for the Olympics.

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With each step England advances, the decision to skip Rio looks dumb and dumberer.

It wasn't England's decision in the end.

Edited by Rob.

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Japan 2-1 Netherlands

...

Since the results from the Women's World Cup do not clearly identify the third best team from Europe, a play-off with the remaining teams (Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland) will take place, which will be organised by UEFA at a later date.

http://m.fifa.com/womensolympic/news/y=2015/m=6/news=germany-france-qualify-for-rio-2016-2652563.html

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In the mens tournament Denmark has with a semifnal in U21 European championschip qualified for the Olympic tournament for the first time since 1992!!! I think and hope that 2016 then could be one the biggest Danish Olympic team in many many years, if both our handball teams succeed also, wich i hope and expect.

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This is why I have so much dispiriting regarding the Home Nations FAs. After all the corruption that's been going on with FIFA, why not just allow a grandfather clause towards England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland and let them play under FIFA tournaments, and when it comes to the Olympics, have them play under the Team GB/BOA banner with no fear of a FIFA-forced merger. Even if the majority of the players would end up being English. Did the idea of player quotas ever came up in discussions like at least certain percentage of players has to be Scottish, Welsh, Irish, Channel Islanders. As already mentioned in these threads, this will definitely hurt the British women's soccer game at a time when England is rising in the global women's soccer game and WPL earns greater prominence and better talent. All the Three Lionesses will look forward to is the Euro championships and Women's World Cups. People everywhere around the world, however, know the Olympics. Agreed the decision not to participate in the Olympics is a potentially damaging look for British women's soccer and its near future prospects.

The German women definitely deserved to go to London, even if they lost to Japan in the quarterfinals as hosts four years ago, and surely would been competitive. UEFA really needs to actually develop a full-fledged women's Olympic qualification tournament. Should not be hard to ask. This time though, a 4-team playoff between Norway, The Netherlands, Sweden, and Switzerland is a nice start.

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New Zealand take legal action over Olympic football disqualification

New Zealand are to take legal action after their men's team were thrown out of Olympic qualifying for fielding an ineligible player.

The Kiwis were due to play Fiji in the final of the Oceania qualifiers after beating Vanuatu 2-0 in the semi-finals.

But the Oceania Football Confederation (OCF) upheld Vanuatu's protest that South-African born Deklan Wynne was ineligible to play in the match.

Vanuatu were then awarded a 3-0 win, but lost to Fiji in Sunday's final.

Fiji will represent the Oceania region at next year's Rio Olympics after beating Vanuatu 4-3 on penalties.

Left-back Wynne, 20, represented New Zealand at the Fifa Under-20 World Cup last month and has played at senior level after becoming a naturalized New Zealander.

The OCF's disciplinary committee ruled on Sunday that Wynne did not meet any of the criteria set out in article seven of the Fifa statutes, that would allow him to represent New Zealand.

Wynne, who was not born in New Zealand and doesn't have a New Zealand parent or grandparent, would have to have lived in New Zealand for five years from the age of 18 to be eligible.

New Zealand Football said it was not aware of the disciplinary hearing and was told the matter was being referred to Fifa.

They are now working with their lawyers to contest the committee's decision

Chief executive Andy Martin said: "While we firmly believe that the match should have been delayed, we will continue to do everything in our power to ensure that any final decision is only reached after a proper and fair process has been carried out.

"We trust that Oceania Football Confederation will change its position and conduct that proper and fair process."

BBC

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