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FIFA Seeks Olympic Stadium Finals

October 29, 2002

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ZURICH, Switzerland (AP) _ Soccer’s governing body wants the finals for its sport at the 2004 Games held at the main Olympic stadium in Athens.

``The finals for Olympic tournaments are always in the main stadium,″ FIFA spokesman Alain Leiblang told The Associated Press on Tuesday.

FIFA will ask the International Olympic Committee to change the time of the men’s final and the date of the women’s final, he added.

Athens 2004 organizers said Tuesday the venue and exact time of the soccer finals for men and women is yet to be decided.

Greek organizers originally planned to hold the soccer finals at the Karaiskaki soccer stadium in Athens’ port of Piraeus. But they said last month the stadium could not be refurbished on time and the finals should instead take place in the main Olympic complex.

Denis Oswald, who heads the IOC committee overseeing the games, said there were scheduling difficulties and FIFA still had to authorize the switch for the events, which are scheduled for Aug. 28 and 29 in 2004.

FIFA confirmed the rules of previous Olympic tournaments. Only three players on each men’s team may be older than 23. Women must be at least 16, with no upper age limit.