Keeping Up With The Times
The Sunday Times has reported that the first official report on EURO 2008 by UEFA has revealed that Scotland and Ireland are leading the race to host the tournament. The report, by the UEFA inspection team that visited all the bidding countries earlier this year, confirms the Scotland-Ireland bid are joint favourites with the bid from Austria and Switzerland. Last week we reported on leaks coming out from the UEFA tourists report. And these leaks have been backed up by a study of the technical merits of the seven bids by Sports Business International (SBI), a leading world sport publication. SBI have placed Scotland and Ireland in pole position. This will come as welcome news after the hiccup last week when Brendon Menton, a key player in the Irish end of the joint bid, quit as general secretary of the Football Association of Ireland.
The UEFA inspection team is said to have been "very impressed" with the bid, particularly Scotland's stadiums and training centres. In what may be a bit of a surprise, Scotland's hotels, tourist industry and transport links also won praise from the inspectors. They also took time to comment favourably on the bid document, a brochure produced by Leith-based consultants Navy Blue.
Ger Harley (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Al McIntosh (Al@scottishfitba.net)
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