Austria go for 2008

Last updated : 23 June 2002 By Stuart Crowther

Austrians throw their hat into the ring
(Stuart Crowther)

Austria have indicated that they will enter the race to host the European Championships in 2008.

Having failed in a joint bid with Hungary to host the championships in 2004, when the tournament will take place in Portugal, the Austrians now appear keen to renew their efforts in a bid for the 2008 competition. And they may be joined by Croatia, Switzerland or their 2004 partners Hungary.

While former partners Hungary might be the favourites in the eyes of many to partner the Austrians, President of the Austrian Football Federation, Beppo Mauhart, said yesterday: "We do not have any obligation to Hungary. Indeed Switzerland could also be an interesting partner for any 2008 bid."

Austria drew 1-1 in a friendly with Hungary last night, ahead of which their were believed to have been talks about another European Championships bid. One option being considered is a partnership between Austria, Hungary and Croatia, but such a bid would require the Croatians to give up any right to automatic qualification. Mauhart meanwhile said that he had also been approached at a FIFA congress in Zurich by Swiss officials with a view to a joint bid.

Scotland celebrate a win over Austria - who now look set to become opponents in battle with much higher stakes!

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