McGuinty Government Invests $1 Million in FIFA U-20 World Cup

    Eight Games In Ottawa, Jim Watson Provides Free Tickets For Youth

    OTTAWA, June 29 /CNW/ - The Ontario government is providing $1 million to
help the Canadian Soccer Association host 20 FIFA U-20 World Cup Canada 2007
matches in Ontario, including eight in Ottawa, Health Promotion Minister Jim
Watson announced today.
    "We are thrilled to welcome the world to Ottawa and to play host to this
incredibly popular soccer tournament. It's exciting that local soccer fans
have a tremendous opportunity to see the stars of tomorrow, today right here
in our hometown," said Watson. "In hosting this event, the City of Ottawa
benefits from tourism, jobs and the influence that an event of this level has
on encouraging young people to get more active and try something new."
    Earlier today, in partnership with the Canadian Soccer Association,
Watson provided 125 game tickets to the Ottawa YMCA/YWCA and 125 to the Boys
and Girls Club of Ottawa so young people could watch the soccer stars in
    Ottawa matches will be played at Frank Clair Stadium at Landsdowne Park,
with the first game here on Saturday, June 30 between Panama and Korea.
    The Under 20 World Cup, which runs from June 30 to July 22, is the
largest single-sport event ever held in Canada, A total of 52 matches
featuring 24 of the world's best teams will be played in six cities across
    The gold and bronze medal matches will be held at the new National Soccer
Stadium in Toronto. The province invested $8 million in the development of the
stadium to attract events such as the World Cup and to build a legacy of sport
infrastructure and community resources in Ontario.
    "Soccer is such a beautiful sport and such a wonderful vehicle for
improving our health and fitness," said Canadian Soccer Association president
Colin Linford. "We are pleased that Ontario is supporting the FIFA U-20 World
Cup Canada 2007. This event will help showcase our sport at a local, national
and global level."
    The province is supporting the tournament as part of the McGuinty
government's commitment to attracting world-class sport events to the
province. This commitment is an element of the province's overall strategy to
increase Ontarians' participation in physical activity and sport. The event is
one of the first that the McGuinty government pursued under the guidelines of
Ontario's International Amateur Sport Hosting Policy.

    The Ministry of Health Promotion was established to improve and deliver
programs that contribute to healthy living and wellness in Ontario. Key
priority areas include Ontario's smoke-free strategy, healthy eating, active
living, sport and recreation, injury prevention and mental health promotion.

    Disponible en français


For further information:

For further information: Adam Grachnik, Minister's Office, (416)
326-8497; Julie Rosenberg, Communications Branch, (416) 326-4833

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