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February, 2004 - Nr. 2


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Munich After All

Opening ceremony in Munich after all

  TWIG - The opening ceremonies for the 2006 soccer World Cup will be held in Munich after all — despite an aggressive push to move the celebrations to Berlin.

In a letter to Munich Mayor Christian Ude, FIFA head Sepp Blatter said world soccer’s governing body would uphold the tradition of staging the opening game and celebrations in the same city.

Some German officials, including Interior Minister Otto Schily, had proposed holding the opening ceremony as a separate event in Berlin.

Berlin is already the site of the July 9 final game, in part because it is the country’s capital and because its Olympiastadion is one of the most famous arenas in the world.

Blatter’s decision didn’t rule out a separate show in Berlin on the day before the official opening, said organizing committee vice president Wolfgang Niersbach. But such a show would have a different character than the official ceremony in Munich, he added.

"It’s quite clear that the official ceremony will take place in Munich," Niersbach said.

The opening match is scheduled for June 9, 2006.

Republished with permission from "The Week in Germany"


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