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Euro 2008 may not be profitable for all

Operators of football stadiums in Switzerland say they are not convinced that the Euro 2008 finals will be financially successful for them.

In Bern and Basel, two of the venues, they comment they will be satisfied if they can break even.

The tournament, also taking place in neighbouring Austria, is expected to be the most lucrative ever for the game's European umbrella body, Uefa, based in Nyon, western Switzerland.

The director of the Stade de Suisse in Bern, Stefan Niedermaier, comments that he is proud that the world's third largest sporting event is also taking place in "his" stadium.

But he is concerned that extra costs caused by such issues as security may cause a loss even before the event.

For example, work estimated at SFr130,000 francs ($115,422) will have to be carried out to satisfy Uefa's demands for more media space.

Bern and Basel hope that the event will prove profitable in terms of image if not financially.

The situation is different in Zurich and Geneva, the two other Swiss venues, where public money has been injected to stage the matches.

Uefa expects receipts of SFr2 billion from Euro 2008, with half of that sum going on tournament costs such as renting the stadiums, security, marketing, payment to cities and personnel expenses.

It plans to spend the profit of around SFr1 billion on development projects in its 53 member associations over the next four years.


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