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Title: FIFA, UEFA make offer to Northern Cyprus - (2008-08-14)
Description:

ZURICH, Switzerland: FIFA and UEFA moved Thursday to bring the disputed territory of northern Cyprus closer to involvement in international football.

The two governing football organizations met with Turkish Cypriot Football Association (CTFA) president Omer Adal to offer a proposal on greater co-operation with the officially recognized Cyprus Football Association.

Details of the offer have been kept confidential until it has been considered by all of the CTFA, an unofficial body representing football in the northern part of the politically divided island. Its teams and players are not allowed to take part in international matches.

"There is now a concrete proposal with the Turkish Cypriot association, which shows the progress that has been made," FIFA spokesman Pekka Odriozola said. "This process only started last September and these types of negotiations are not easy."

When talks began last year, one of the stated goals was to explore creating a united national team.

The Cyprus national team recruits players only from the Greek Cypriot side of the island, which has been divided since Turkey invaded the north in 1974. Only Turkey recognizes the state subsequently declared by the Turkish Cypriots.

FIFA recognizes just the Greek Cypriot association because its rules forbid competing associations.

Cyprus, which is ranked 64th in the world, will try to qualify for the 2010 World Cup in the same group as Italy, Bulgaria, Ireland, Georgia and Montenegro

 



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