Spanish Olympic Chief: Why we need 2020 GamesNovember 29th, 2011 - 9:42 pm ICT by IANS
Madrid, Nov 29 (IANS) Alejandro Blanco, the president of the Spanish Olympic Committee and the man who will head the campaign to take the 2020 Games to Madrid, has highlighted the importance of winning the bid.
Blanco replaced Alberto Ruiz-Gallardon at the head of the 2020 candidacy after Gallardon, the Mayor of Madrid and recently elected to the Spanish Congress, Monday announced it would be better to have a non-political figure leading the campaign, Xinhua reported.
“The question of politics is not important when it comes to defending a candidacy. People in sport realise that it is sportsmen and women who have to take up the role,” said Blanco.
Spain is currently suffering from the effects of the economic crisis. Blanco admitted that although being awarded the Games would help the Spanish economy, the current crisis made his job harder.
“People are not questioning Spain’s candidacy, but the moment Spain is in, we have to give off an image of economic solvency and to do that we need the help of this country’s businesses,” he said.
A key factor for Madrid’s 2020 bid is that the city has a large part of its sporting infrastructure already in place, which means no further building work needs to be carried out for the moment.
“We will only be spending money in presenting our candidacy,” confirmed Blanco.
“We need the Games, with the political and economic situation the country is living in at the moment, we need a project to unite us all. The Games mean a lot for every country, but they mean more for Spain. If we want the games, we have to believe that we are going to be chosen and we have to work for them,” he said.
Madrid will compete against cities like Baku, Doha, Istanbul and Rome. “All of the rivals are dangerous and we can’t predict who will win,” Blanco added.
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Tags: alberto ruiz gallardon, baku, candidacy, doha, economic crisis, economic situation, infrastructure, istanbul, madrid, olympic chief, olympic committee, rivals, rome, solvency, spain, spanish congress, spanish economy, spending money, sportsmen, xinhua