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Volume 6 No. 195

International Football

Bulgarian Football Union President Borislav Mihaylov said that he will meet with PM Boiko Borisov "to discuss a possible bid to host a Euro 2020 match," according to Angel Krasimirov of REUTERS. Mihaylov, who is also a UEFA Exec Committee member, said: "In general, all games must be played at 50,000-capacity stadiums or at bigger ones. UEFA will make only two exceptions and give two cities, which have stadiums with smaller capacity, the chance to host matches. This will be done to give smaller countries like Bulgaria an opportunity to host a match in the group stage." Bulgaria's Vasil Levski national stadium, located in the center of capital Sofia, has 43,230 seats "but needs to be renovated to meet criteria set by UEFA." Mihaylov: "The most important thing now is to talk to Prime Minister Boiko Borisov in the coming days about the government's intentions, and whether it wants to participate in the construction of a stadium that meets the criteria set by UEFA" (REUTERS, 1/28).

Egypt's Premier League will "begin as scheduled" on Saturday after last weekend's verdict, according to AHRAM. All Egyptian domestic football activities have been suspended since February when 71 Ahly fans were killed and hundreds injured in Port Said stadium. Egypt FA board member Mahmoud El-Shamy said, "The Premier League new season will begin as scheduled on Feb. 2 after the court's decision. We can't comment on the verdicts as we trust in the Egyptian judiciary" (AHRAM, 1/26). In Cairo, Mahmoud Elassal reported Egypt assistant coach Diaa El-Sayed said that he is confident the premier league "will start on schedule despite the latest wave of street protests." El-Sayed said, "The domestic league is important for the teams as well as the national team. We support resuming the Premier League as we are arranging a national team camp after the first week of the league" (AHRAM, 1/28).