April 19th, 2005

The UEFA Champions League finals in 2006 and 2007 will be played in Paris and Athens respectively, after UEFA awarded hosting rights to the Stade de France and the ATHENS OLYMPIC STADIUM. The decision was taken by UEFA's Executive Committee at its meeting in Tallinn, Estonia.

The Olympic Stadium will host its first European final since the venue was rebuilt to hold the 2004 Olympic Games. The stadium previously hosted two European Cup (later Champions League) finals, on 25/5/83 (Hamburg 1-0 Juventus) and on 18/5/94 (Milan 4-0 Barcelona). A CupWinners' Cup final was also played there on 13/5/87 (Ajax 1-0 Lokomotiv Leipzig).

Other candidates for the 2007 final included the new Wembley Stadium (which will be ready by then) and the Berlin Olympiastadion (which will host the 2006 World Cup final). The Athens Olympic Stadium was chosen over them "after considering merits in terms of capacity, stadium infrastructure and dossiers including city and airport agreements and promotional plans", according to UEFA.

Finally, note that another Greek stadium, Karaiskaki, was a candidate to host either the 2006 or 2007 UEFA Cup final. For various reasons, most important of which is the fact that Athens had already been awarded the Champions League final, Karaiskaki lost to Philips Stadium of Eindhoven (2006) and Hampden Park of Glasgow (2007).

Related article:
UEFA accreditation for the Olympic Stadium and Karaiskaki (4/4/05)