Public funding for EC 2010

Category: European Championship - published 2010-02-05 by

The federal government of Germany will fund this year's European Championships at Frankfurt/Main with subsidies. The German governing body for sports, Deutscher Olympischer Sport-Bund (DOSB), and the German Department of the Interior not only reviewed the financial planning for the event and compliance with Anti-Doping-laws, but also determined the tournament to be of special relevance to German sports. EFAF's most prestigious competition, held every four years, for the first time will feature the top six national teams from the continent in the battle for the European crown. The logistic efforts associated with the expansion from four to six teams can be achieved this year, as the hosting federation from Germany has partnered up with local city and state authorities at Frankfurt and Hessen. Recognition of the tournament as an event of special relevance and subsequently its financial backing by the federal government of Germany not only is helping the local organisation: It also is honouring the work accomplished by EFAF with setting up regular competition for the national teams of its member federations.

The A-pool tournament in July concludes the three-step series in determining the European champion. The concept of pooling teams from different playing levels was invented in 2003. While it was of no big change to the top nations, it was of great benefit for the vast majority of European American Football federations. In contrast to the scheduling formula used before, no longer had they to maintain a national team for just one or two qualification games, with the inevitable outcome of being beaten heavily by one of the top teams in the qualification rounds sooner or later. Now, while still guaranteeing each nation the chance to march through to the final, teams from roughly the same level of play are gathering for multi-game tournaments with much less lopsided games. And have the chance to rate progresses made more accurately - simply from the final standings of the respective pool tournament and not by trying to make a dubious guess from telling the difference of one 50+-point-defeat against one of the top teams to another blowout by some other „powerhouse“.

The top nations on the other hand, freed from the hassles of qualification games, can fill up their schedules in non-competition years with games much better suited to their needs. Be it the Scandinavians, regularly continuing their traditional rivalrys in friendly (but in no way meaningless) games. Or be it the Germans, who just recently announced to fly in the Japanese national team to Dusseldorf for a game in April, which should mark the begin of a series of clashes between the current World Cup silver and bronze medalists labeled as German-Japan-Bowl. As with the EC opening and final game (and the German Bowls of 2008 through to 2010) the Germans for their game against Japan are able to make use of one of the most modern venues in the country, Dusseldorf's Esprit-Arena, refurbished in the run-up to the 2006 FIFA World Cup like Frankfurt's Commerzbank-Arena.

At the Commerzbank-Arena, preparations for the European Championship tournament at Frankfurt in the meantime are gearing up. The opener between Germany and Austria (C- and B-pool winners of the recent EC series) and the final game will be played at the state-of-the-art arena, while the remaining preliminary games and team practices will be held at other Frankfurt venues. The assistance of the local authorities, a highly developed public transport system, one of Europe's major airline hubs with Frankfurt's Rhein-Main airport and an abundance of hotel room capacities at all price ranges that stem from the city's role as one of the leading fair and convention centres of the world should help to make EC 2010 quite a remarkable experience for athletes and spectators alike.

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