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Page last updated at 07:23 GMT, Wednesday, 6 August 2008 08:23 UK

GB will field 2012 team, says FA

The London Olympic logo and FA chief executive Brian Barwick
FA chief Barwick is determined there will be a GB football team in 2012

The Football Association says Great Britain will have a team at London 2012 even if it does not have the backing of all the home nations.

FA chief executive Brian Barwick told BBC Sport: "Do I think we should have a team representing football in the 2012 Olympics? Yes."

Asked about which home nations the players would come from he said team composition "is for a later debate".

FA chairman Lord Triesman said he was "completely committed" to a GB team.

The football governing bodies of Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales are against the idea of a unified Great Britain team because of fears they could lose their independent status.

England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland compete in international football tournaments as separate entities but it is Great Britain that represents the home nations in the Olympics.

I can see no good reason for not having a team at all

FA chairman Lord Triesman

As a result Great Britain, the 1908 and 1912 champions, has not fielded a side since the 1964 Olympics.

Earlier this week Sepp Blatter, president of world governing body Fifa, said he would have no problem if Great Britain fielded a team consisting of 11 England players.

FA boss Barwick said he understood the concerns of the other home nations but stressed a team would be entered come what may.

"We have to respect their views but this is an Olympics that is going to take place in London in four years' time and I think you'll get from my view that there's an appetite for us to have a team," he said.

606: DEBATE
Dan W - BBC Sport
Asked if there was a chance it could be composed entirely of English players he replied: "Didn't we win a hockey (gold) medal in 1988 with all English players and one Northern Irish player? There is precedent."

Lord Triesman told BBC Sport it would be "barking mad" if Great Britain did not field a football team at the London Olympics.

"I can see no good reason for not having one at all. Whatever it has to be comprised of, we will have a team in the 2012 Olympics," he insisted.


see also
Blatter welcomes GB football team
04 Aug 08 |  Football
Ferguson not keen on London role
25 Jul 08 |  Football
FA wants GB team in 2012 Olympics
06 Jul 05 |  Olympics 2012
Wales mindful of GB football team
10 Jun 05 |  Olympics 2012
No Scots for GB Olympic football
11 Nov 05 |  Football
Coe hopeful on GB football team
12 Dec 05 |  Internationals


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