Football in Iceland
With 20,000 players (men and women) registered with clubs, football is easily the most popular sport in Iceland. However, the country did host the U-18 European Championship in 1997. During the draw for EURO 2004, Iceland, a country with sparse population numbers (just 290,000 people live in a country measuring 104,000 km2) were placed among the third level of seeds, a reflection of the quality of Icelandic football within Europe. Approximately 50 players ply their trade in professional leagues around Europe, mainly in England, Germany and Norway. In the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, the most well known players were the current national team coach, Asgeir Sigurvinsson (Standard Liege, Bayern Munich and VfB Stuttgart), Arnór Gudjohnsen (Lokeren, Anderlecht, Bordeaux) and Atli Edvaldsson (Borussia Dortmund, Fortuna Düsseldorf and Bayer Uerdingen). The current star of Icelandic football is Eidur Gudjohnsen, who plays for Chelsea.
The Goal Project
In July 2001, the Goal Bureau added the Iceland FA to the list of beneficiaries of the Goal Programme. New offices and a technical centre are to be built in the sports centre in Reykjavik that also features the national stadium. The national association would own these new facilities and there are also plans to renovate the national stadium. The City of Reykjavik is the proprietor of the whole sports centre. Discussions regarding financial matters, cession of usage rights and the transfer of ownership are currently underway. However, the project has been delayed so severely that the Goal Bureau felt there was no other option than to remove Iceland from the list of Goal beneficiaries until a concrete project can be presented. Iceland will be added to the list as soon as a project is ready for approval.
Use of FAP funds from 2001 to June 2003
Financing of Goal project
Project
National association headquarters in Reykjavik
Project approved
Project proposal delayed
Status
Project suspended
Other FIFA development activities
1995, 1999 in Helsinki (FIN)
Futuro courses
1997
Referees' course
23.12.2005