VIEIRA, ETO’O, VOLLER AND FRISK LAUNCH FORD’S FEELFOOTBALL DEBATE

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MILAN, April 3, 2007 – Ford of Europe, a long-time partner of the UEFA Champions League, is inviting football fans to engage their heroes in the biggest ever pan-European debate on the sport – a new initiative called ‘feel football’.

Some of the game’s most outspoken figures, including Patrick Vieira, Samuel Eto’o, Rudi Völler and Anders Frisk, will be available on feelfootball.com. to hear from and respond to fans on the latest hot football topics.

Fans will be able to challenge the ‘feel football’ Champions online, as well as earn the opportunity to meet them face-to-face and train with them.  In addition, fans will be invited to participate in what may become the biggest survey the sport has seen.  The results of a ‘What Fans Feel’ online survey could influence the shape of the game for the future.

“This is a real opportunity for football fans across Europe to be heard – and Ford is delighted to facilitate that opportunity,” said Stephen Odell, vice president of Marketing, Sales and Service for Ford of Europe.

No Holding Back.
Inter Milan’s Vieira, Eto’o from FC Barcelona, former German World Cup winner and coach Völler and former FIFA referee Frisk are all eager to give their unique point of view and share opinions with players and fans through ‘feelfootball.com’.

Vieira believes the game of football, with the challenges it faces and opportunities it has, needs this type of dialogue. He said: “Everyone knows some things have to change. Many things have been decided but we must apply these decisions and be really strong and tough when following them through.”

The four Champions will be online regularly to air their opinions on the burning issues of the day.  They will also share their comments on individual UEFA Champions League games on the site throughout the season.

More big names are set to join in the debate soon.  Hot topics likely to be discussed include technology in football, cheating, penalties and women’s football, as well as all-time classic games, goals and players.

As the debate develops, fans can decide what interests them, what they want to know, to understand and to change. Ten key topics will be chosen for the ‘What Fans Feel’ survey that will place the game under the microscope and highlight the top issues that European football fans really care about.

The results of the ‘What Fans Feel’ survey will be revealed on August 24, the same day as the UEFA Champions League draw.  The opinions of Europe’s football fans and players will be presented by the ‘feelfootball’ Champions at an inaugural ‘feelfootball’ Summit event.

“When these views are heard, the debate and the action is sure to heat up,” commented Odell.  “We’re looking forward to the results.”