Football: FIFA joins doping battle

LONDON. February 17. KAZINFORM Soccer stars will face a more systematic regime of drug testing following world governing body FIFA's decision to introduce biological profiles for players.

The move comes as global sport is trying to crack down on drug cheats in the wake of recent doping scandals.

Lance Armstrong's loss of his seven Tour de France titles, followed by his admission of using performance-enhancing substances in an interview with Oprah Winfrey, brought the problem of drug use by athletes to worldwide attention.

And last week Australia was stunned by a government report which alleged many professional athletes are using forbidden drugs often supplied by organized crime groups .

In Spain, the Operacion Puerto trial is now underway following an investigation, which began in 2006, into the widespread doping network operated by Dr. Eufemiano Fuentes, CNN reported.

Now FIFA is taking steps to address any possible use of banned substances within football, announcing its plan to bring in biological profiles following discussions between president Sepp Blatter and his World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) counterpart John Fahey on Thursday.

The profiles, similar to the biological passports used within cycling, will first be run at June's Confederations Cup -- a warmup tournament for the 2014 World Cup, also being held in Brazil.

Biological profiles are built up by collating an athlete's drug test results over time, therefore making it easier to detect differences which could indicate the use of a banned substance.

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