Victor Yushchenko met with FIFA President Joseph Blatter on Saturday to speak about Ukraine and Poland’s bid to host the 2012 UEFA European Football Championship, according to the President`s press-office.

The Ukrainian leader said it was a great honor for every European country to host such an international competition. He said football helped Ukrainians reinforce their presence in Europe and popularize their country worldwide.

“It is Ukraine’s strategic goal to integrate into the world and Europe as soon as possible, no matter what we are speaking about,” he said, adding that the joint bid also helped Ukraine and Poland “unite their European future.”

“This competition will be a real football spectacle for Europe. This is a unique event, a precedent for which we have been waiting and which will give new stimuli to football in Europe,” he said.

The President thanked Mr. Blatter for his work and presented him with the Order of Yaroslav the Wise.

Secretariat Chief of Staff Viktor Baloha, his first deputy, Ivan Vasyunyk, Ukrainian Football Federation President Grygoriy Surkis and Youth and Sports Minister Viktor Korzh were present at the meeting.