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Wales against Team GB Olympic bid

Wales midfielder Simon Davies in action against Azerbaijan in the World Cup qualifying opener
Wales' Simon Davies in action against Azerbaijan in their World Cup opener

The Welsh Football Association says it will not take part in a British Olympic football team for fear of jeopardising Wales' standalone international status.

Scottish Secretary Jim Murphy has gained assurances from Fifa that a one-off under-23 squad in 2012 would not impact on the home teams' standings.

"We would do nothing that will jeopardise our position," said Welsh FA secretary general David Collins.

"And I believe we have the support of all football fans in Wales."

The football governing bodies of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland all oppose a Great Britain team.

Concerns have been raised that a combined British team could affect the status of individual nations within football's governing body Fifa.

Murphy said it was for football people to decide but the SFA said it still saw the idea as a threat.

606: DEBATE

The Scottish secretary said he had been seeking assurances over the possibility of a GB international team taking part in the 2012 London Olympics.

"I met Jerome Valcke, the general secretary of Fifa, yesterday and told him about my concerns and the concerns that many Scots have," said Murphy.

"He confirmed that Fifa, of course who regulate football, that the executive will agree that this one-off under-23 tournament could take place and it will not jeopardise the status of any of the home nations and I think that's very welcome news."

But Welsh football chief Collins told BBC Sport: "That makes very little difference to our stance.

"The Fifa president Sepp Blatter made that statement when London were awarded the 2012.

"But it is up to the FIFA congress, comprising its 200-odd member countries, who take that decision.

"However, we do not want to jeopardise Wales taking part in the World Cup or European Championships.

"And the Football Association of Wales with its sister associations of Scotland and Northern Ireland have been of one voice."

Prime Minister Gordon Brown supports the idea of a Team GB and last week Tory leader David Cameron suggested a 2012 London Olympics team could be decided by playing a home nations tournament.

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see also
Fifa says Team GB 'poses no risk'
12 Nov 08 |  Scotland
Olympic football play-offs call
09 Nov 08 |  Scotland
Brown pays tribute to GB success
24 Aug 08 |  Beijing 2008
Wales mindful of GB football team
10 Jun 05 |  Olympics 2012


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