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Milan’s Mayor talks up 2028 Olympics bid

Milan’s Mayor, Giuseppe Sala, has put forward his city for a potential bidder for the 2028 summer Olympics, should the 2024 Games be awarded to a non-European host.

Sala’s comments come with Rome’s bid for the 2024 Olympics having edged closer to collapse this week. Italian Olympic Committee (CONI) president Giovanni Malago admitted on Tuesday that the “game is over” after he wrote to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to suspend Rome’s bid.

Malago’s declaration to the IOC left the door ajar for an unlikely revival of the bid if there are political changes in the city’s administration. Last month Rome's city council voted to withdraw support of the bid on the recommendation of Mayor Virginia Raggi. However, Malago has acknowledged that Rome’s hopes of landing the Games are effectively over, with Budapest, Los Angeles and Paris the three remaining candidates.

Sala discussed the Olympic situation in an interview with Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport today (Thursday). He said: “First of all I'm sorry for Rome, which had a serious, credible project. We've got to wait until 2017 for that edition to be awarded and if it goes to Paris, then we wouldn't even talk about it, but if Los Angeles wins and it goes to a non-European city, then CONI could think about putting forward Milan for 2028. In fact, I would say that it would be very fair to do so, if this meant that the Olympics would be an opportunity to invest in the city's sports venues.”

In August, the ongoing uncertainty surrounding Rome’s bid led to the Governor of Lombardy, Roberto Maroni, stating that the region’s capital, Milan, would be prepared to step in should Rome withdraw. Maroni even opened a Facebook poll to gauge interest in such a move, but the possibility was swiftly rejected by Sala, who said that a switch would be impossible due to IOC bidding rules.