International football

Basque federation to seek full Uefa and Fifa recognition

Basque federation to seek full Uefa and Fifa recognition

David Aguilar

EFE

The Basque Football Federation (FVF) has voted 43 to 0 to ask the governing bodies to grant Euskadi "official international status" to compete as a nation.

The general assembly of the Basque Football Federation (FVF) has voted almost unanimously to seek full international recognition from Uefa and Fifa to compete as a nation.

In a vote held on Wednesday, the FVF voted 43 to 0, with one abstention, to gain “full international status” from the governing bodies and will now put forward an official request to be instated into Uefa and Fifa as a national teal in its own right.

After the vote, the FVF released a statement “expressing the will of the FVF, in representation of Basque football, to attain official international status for its representative teams and to draw up a formal request for direct integration into Uefa and Fifa.”

FVF hoping to follow Gibraltar's lead

The Basque Country (Euskadi) is only able to play games in a friendly capacity as they are not recognized by Uefa and Fifa. Catalonia has a similar arrangement and until recently the two autonomous regions staged an annual game against each other at Christmas. Euskadi’s last game, a friendly against Venezuela, ended in a 4-2 victory for the home side in Vitoria-Gasteiz.

Although officially part of the Spanish Football Federation, the FVF hopes that Uefa and Fifa will follow a similar line to that adopted for the Faroe Islands and Gibraltar, who are both members of Uefa and Fifa despite being an autonomous country of Denmark and a British Overseas Territory, respectively.

The current Euskadi squad contains players such as Athletic Bilbao’s Aritz Aduriz, Iñigo Martínez and Iñaki Williams, Real Sociedad’s Yuri Berchiche and Asier Illarramendi and Eibar keeper Asier Riesgo.