Victor Yushchenko has met with UEFA President Lennart Johansson, according to the President`s press-office


      “Our task is to promote Ukraine as a powerful European country that appreciates sports. We are working hard to achieve this noble goal,” he said.

      The President said Ukrainians were fond of football, which “helps us strengthen our presence in the world.” He added that Ukraine could be proud of many great achievements in football.

      One of them, he explained, is our participation in this year’s World Cup quarterfinal, which put Ukraine among the best eight teams of the world.

      Mr. Yushchenko said Ukraine and Poland were eager to co-host the Euro 2012 finals. He said this event “has extraordinary social importance for the two nations,” adding that the championship would be a “fantastic spectacle if held in Central and Eastern Europe.”

      “This will be a unique event, a desired and expected precedent which will stimulate the European football movement,” he opined.

      The President expressed hopes the UEFA Executive Committee would support the two country’s bid and “the passionate desire of Ukrainians and Poles to host the Euro 2012.”

      Following the meeting, he decorated Mr. Johansson with the Yaroslav the Wise Order for his contribution to the promotion of football in Europe.

      First Deputy Secretariat Chief of Staff Ivan Vasyunyk, ex-Minister of Culture Ihor Likhovy, who now heads the Secretariat Office to Preserve Cultural Heritage, and the Ukrainian Football Federation President, member of the UEFA Executive Committee Grygoriy Surkis attended the meeting.