9 Pele to speak at Stadia Sports Turf Summit

Brazilian football legend Pelé to speak at Sports Turf Summit

By Mark Bisson

Pelé, the former Brazilian footballer widely regarded as the world's greatest ever player, has been confirmed to speak at Stadia's Sports Turf Summit 2004 (STS2004). The two-day conference and exhibition - the largest dedicated event for the global natural and synthetic sports turf industry - takes place at Berlin's Estrel Convention Center on 2-3 November.

The 64-year-old, who led his national team to three World Cup victories in 1958, 1962 and 1970, will answer questions on his experience of artificial-turf pitches at the training facilities of his former club Santos FC in a session on 'Stadium experiences' on the morning of Tuesday 2 November.

Pelé, born Edson Arantes do Nascimento, will also join Dr Wilfried Straub, chairman of the Bundesliga (DFL), at the ribbon-cutting to officially open the exhibition at 12 noon on Tuesday 2 November.

With FIFA and UEFA revising their standards for artificial-turf pitches and the expectation that they may one day be used for high-level competition matches, the conference is attracting a host of football clubs from across the world.The two-day conference and exhibition is 'Officially recognised by the German FA (DFB)'. Dr Hans-Georg Moldenhauer, vice president of the DFB, will deliver the keynote address at the STS2004 conference.

A DFB delegation, including members of the federation's 26 regional football associations, will attend the event.In addition to the DFB's input, the conference will include updates on turf research from FIFA, UEFA and the English Football Association. The conference line-up is in place and includes more than 26 experts from the fields of stadium management, technical research and governing bodies. The event will explore the commercial aspects, technical development, best practice maintenance and performance of natural and synthetic surfaces.

Running alongside STS2004 is Stadia's inaugural Stadium Revenue Summit - a two-day conference focusing on the latest revenue generation and operational aspects of football facilities

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