Hudghton (Greens/EFA), on behalf of the Greens/EFA Group - Mr President, Mr Belet made reference to believing in the autonomy of sport. I agree. The report draws attention to areas where more cooperation or even regulation might be appropriate, but I believe the structure and organisation of the game of football is not one of them. Local, national and international leagues and competitions are best left to the football authorities to organise. Around here, when we refer to the term 'national' we tend to mean 'of the Member State'. The Member State is, of course, the building block of the European Union, but in football that is not the case. I and my Welsh colleague, Jill Evans, have tabled amendments 28 and 29, which I hope will be adopted tomorrow. A football game which is being played this very evening illustrates why these amendments are important. My footballing nation, Scotland, is playing Italy, the world champions. Our amendments simply make it clear that 'national' in football does not necessarily mean 'Member State', and nothing in this report or in the terminology of this report ought to in any way bring into doubt or undermine the status of the historic footballing nations of Scotland, Wales and England.

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