The committee leading Los Angeles’ bid for the 2024 Summer Olympics Monday praised the decision by the Manchester United and Real Madrid soccer teams to use the UCLA campus for their upcoming preseason tour training base.

LA 2024 has proposed using the campus for its Olympic Village as part of an overall strategy to use only existing or already-planned facilities in the Los Angeles area as a way to keep costs down. As a result of the approach, LA 2024 has outlined a balanced $5.3 billion budget for the proposed Games.

“We’re delighted that out of all the possible venues across the U.S., Manchester United and Real Madrid chose to use LA 2024’s Olympic and Paralympic Village at UCLA as their preseason training base. UCLA is a paradise for elite athletes — it has already produced 420 Olympians from 45 countries,” LA 2024 Chairman Casey Wasserman said.

“The quality of the campus means LA 2024 can offer the world’s athletes a home away from home with state-of-the-art facilities, while eliminating the risk and billions of dollars in construction inherent in building a facility from scratch. The Olympic and Paralympic Village at UCLA was the logical, responsible and Olympic Agenda 2020-compliant choice for LA 2024,” he said.

The two soccer teams will both use the campus as home base for the West Coast leg of their pre-season tour of the United States this summer, in preparation for the 2017-18 season.

“UCLA is extremely proud to be welcoming these two iconic teams and their world-class players to our campus this summer. Sport is an integral part our culture as an institution, and that is why we work tirelessly to offer our athletes and visiting athletes the best possible conditions,” UCLA’s Athletic Director Dan Guerrero said. “From sports facilities to health, nutrition and accommodation, UCLA gives athletes everything they need to fulfill their potential. It is fitting that some of today’s most famous global sports stars will be testing the facilities for tomorrow’s Olympians and Paralympians.”

L.A. is competing with Paris to host to the 2024 Olympics and the International Olympic Committee will select the winning city in September. The IOC also recently announced its intention to at the same time select one of the cities to host the 2028 Games.

— City News Service

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