Organisation of sport not the responsibility of politics
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The German Minister of the Interior Dr Wolfgang Schauble, FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter, FIFA Executive Committee member Franz Beckenbauer, a high-ranking delegation from the IOC and the German football association (DFB) met at the German Ministry of the Interior in Berlin yesterday to discuss FIFA's 6+5 resolution.

The focal point of the discussions was finding a way to reconcile the 6+5 resolution with European law. All parties support the idea put forward by the FIFA Congress to protect national teams, safeguard the education and training of young players and training clubs, uphold the values of commitment and motivation in football, particularly for young players, and curb the loss of clubs' national identity by limiting the number of foreign players (6+5).

German Minister of the Interior Dr Wolfgang Schäuble supports the underlying principle of the FIFA resolution. Dr Schaüble, whose ministerial portfolio includes sport, also emphasised the importance of initiating a consultation process among the EU bodies. "If autonomous sport wishes to introduce such a measure, we will help it to find a solution at European level," he said.

The FIFA President said, "The value of football cannot be measured in business terms only; the cultural and social value of this sport carry at least the same weight."

Other sports also affected
IOC Vice-President and German Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach supports FIFA's initiative with the argument that other team sports are also combating the same problem. Of central importance is the training of young sportsmen and women, which can only be achieved through restoring a sporting and financial balance between the clubs.

The idea was also supported by DFB President Theo Zwanziger, German Football League President Reinhard Rauball and FIFA Executive Committee member Franz Beckenbauer, who came out strongly in favour of the initiative at this year's FIFA Congress in Sydney.

All those present at the meeting with Dr Schäuble expressed their support for further discussion of this issue, in particular with the French presidency of the EU.

Further information on the 6+5 resolution is available in the stories linked on the panel to the right of this article.