FIFA accepts proposal for standard size soccer pitches, rule won't apply to existing stadiums

Updated: March 14, 2008, 11:37 PM ET
Associated Press

ZURICH, Switzerland -- FIFA accepted a proposal to standardize the size of international soccer fields at all new stadiums.

The governing body's executive committee Friday adopted a new rule from the International Football Association Board to fix the field size at 105 meters by 68 meters (114.8 by 74.4 yards).

The rule will not apply to existing stadiums, and it will not affect the international eligibility of Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., where the United States is negotiating to play Argentina in a friendly match on June 8.

Before the 1994 World Cup in the United States, FIFA said the Giants Stadium could accommodate a field of 103 meters by 63 meters.

Also Friday, FIFA restated its opposition to Bolivia playing international games 11,800 feet above sea level in its capital of La Paz.

FIFA health regulations insist players and officials must adjust for at least two weeks before playing at altitudes above 9,840 feet.

The Bolivian national federation must now propose venues for its remaining home games in South American qualifiers for the 2010 World Cup.

On other issues, the executive committee said:

--The Albanian soccer association's FIFA membership was suspended for government interference in national soccer affairs.

--FIFA recorded a surplus of $49 million in 2007 on revenue of $882 million. The annual financial report showed total assets of nearly $1.2 billion.

Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press

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