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Wednesday, Sep. 21, 2011

Europe holds 53-nation soccer summit

AP

Geneva — Europe's 53 soccer countries will have the future and popularity of their national teams at the top of the agenda at a two-day summit meeting in Cyprus.

UEFA member federations are under pressure from influential clubs to play fewer matches by scrapping some international exhibition dates and cutting the size of qualifying groups for the World Cup and European Championship.

Federation presidents and chief executives also will meet Europe's eight representatives on FIFA's 24-man executive committee four weeks before FIFA President Sepp Blatter unveils his detailed anti-corruption reforms to clean up world soccer.

First, UEFA President Michel Platini wants the brainstorming session in Limassol to help set priorities for his second four-year term, which he secured unopposed by acclaim last March.



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