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Italy unveil 2016 host cities

Twelve cities will hold matches at Euro 2016 if Italy wins the right to host the expanded competition, the Italian soccer federation said on Wednesday.

Bari, Bologna, Cagliari, Florence, Genoa, Milan, Naples, Palermo, Rome, Turin, Udine and Verona would all be used for the 2016 edition, which will be the first to include 24 teams.

Italy, which lost out on Euro 2012 to Poland and Ukraine, has several ageing stadiums but new grounds for Juventus in Turin and AS Roma in Rome are among those in the pipeline.

"Euro 2016 represents an historic opportunity to transform the quality, security and ambience of Italian stadiums," federation president Giancarlo Abete said in a statement.

Officials in Naples, Verona and Cagliari have recently given guarantees that their cities would form part of the bid, the statement added.

Inter Milan are considering moving away from the San Siro but the city council is hoping to host the 2015 Champions League final in the famous stadium, meaning the existing ground will probably form part of the Euro 2016 bid.

Italy, which faces competition from Turkey, France and a joint bid from Norway and Sweden, also unveiled a logo for the candidacy on Wednesday.

Dossiers must be submitted to European soccer's governing body UEFA by February 15 2010 with a decision on the hosts due in May.

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