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‘U’ could host Olympic soccer matches

Minnesota possible site for 2016 Summer Games

Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS — The University of Minnesota could host some Olympic soccer matches if Chicago wins its bid for the 2016 games.

The new Gophers football stadium would be one of six U.S. stadiums hosting preliminary matches as part of the games before the finals at Soldier’s Field in Chicago.

Patrick Ryan is chief executive officer of Chicago 2016. He says in a news release that the venues are spread out as part of plan to include sports fans from across the nation.

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University of Minnesota Athletics Director Joel Maturi says the stadium’s field was designed to be wide enough to accommodate world-class soccer — many football fields aren’t.

The stadium is expected to be finished this summer.

In October, the International Olympic Committee will select the 2016 host city from Chicago, Tokyo, Madrid and Rio de Janeiro.

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