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Wembley to host 2013 Champions League final


NYON, Switzerland (AP) -- The 2013 Champions League final will be played at Wembley, the venue for last month's showcase game.

European soccer's governing body Thursday cited the success of the May 28 game between Manchester United and Barcelona in returning the final to London.

UEFA president Michel Platini said the UEFA executive committee decided on Wembley because it was the best choice overall "for the development of football'' but also because the English Football Association will celebrate its 150th anniversary in 2013.

"We felt it was our duty at UEFA to help the FA celebrate in some special way,'' Platini said. "For this reason we have decided to return to England and specifically to Wembley Stadium.''

Platini declined to identify London's competitors, adding: "There are always a lot of candidates for the final.''

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It will be the first time a stadium has hosted the European Cup final twice in three years, although Wembley hosted the final twice in four years between 1968 and 1971.

"We are delighted Wembley Stadium has been chosen to host the 2013 Champions League final,'' FA chairman David Bernstein said. "UEFA viewed the 2011 Champions League final at Wembley as a major success, and today they have paid us the ultimate compliment.''

He said the anniversary "will be a major celebration of football in this country during a landmark year for our organization.''

Wembley hosted the European Cup final seven times before: 1963, 1968, 1971, 1978, 1992 and 2011.

Next year's game will be in Munich.

The Amsterdam Arena, Ajax's home venue, will host the Europa League final in 2013, while the Super Cup between the winners of the Champions League and Europa League will take place at Eden Stadium in Prague.