UEFA President Michel Platini meets European Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou

Positive and constructive dialogue between UEFA and the European Commission

026 - Positive and constructive dialogue between UEFA and the European Commission

The European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth, Androulla Vassiliou, has visited the House of European Football in Nyon today for talks with UEFA President Michel Platini and discussions with representatives at the launch of UEFA’s Women in Football Leadership Programme.

Discussions between Mr Platini and Mrs Vassiliou focused on the innovative UEFA programme, and continued the long-standing positive and constructive dialogue between European football’s governing body and the European authorities. During her visit to UEFA’s headquarters, Mrs Vassiliou gave a keynote speech on the development of women’s football in Europe. She emphasised her support for women to take up leading positions in the European game, and took part in a Q&A session with the audience.

"It was indeed very inspiring to participate in today's Women in Football Leadership Programme here in Nyon,” European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth Androulla Vassiliou said. “Gender equality is high on the Commission's agenda. My visit to UEFA was also a good opportunity to look back at the cooperation over the past few years. Good governance has been a focal point for both organisations, ranging from gender equality to financial sustainability.

“In this respect, I would like to reiterate the Commission's support for the objectives of the Financial fair play (FFP) rules that UEFA has developed. The full implementation of the FFP rules, which is an excellent example of self-regulation, is a key step to promote better governance in football clubs. Third-party ownership (TPO) is another important element relating to good governance. TPO raises a number of questions on integrity as well as broader ethical concerns. UEFA is looking at this closely and the Commission stands ready to offer its expertise in these efforts. We also discussed the home-grown players rule and agreed that further incentives are necessary to stimulate the training of local players in the interests of the long-term development and societal role of sport,” the European Commissioner added.

The UEFA Women in Football Leadership Programme seeks to identify individuals who have the potential to become leaders, and will aim at helping them to develop the appropriate skills. In addition, women already in leadership positions will be offered extra support in their roles.

“The aim of the Women in Football Leadership Programme is to encourage more women to be in decision-making roles in football. This process can take time of course, but we hope that this programme will be a first big step towards this goal. I believe that we need to try to change the mentality of people in the sport, in the associations, in European clubs, at UEFA too. We have to change the mentality, and the participants in this new programme can help us achieve this,” UEFA President Michel Platini said.

“I was very pleased to speak with Mrs Vassiliou and the meeting gave us an opportunity to align our strategies regarding various important matters for European football,” the UEFA President added.