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Football Takes Tiny Step Closer To Potential Inclusion In Olympics

Vote On Approving Football For Summer Games Could Take Place In 2017
International Olympic Committee Sports Department's Director Christophe Dubi (R) and Ukraine's National Olympic Committee president Sergei Bubka (L) speak as they attend IOC executive board meeting at the SportAccord International Convention in St. Petersburg, on May 31, 2013. (Photo credit should read OLGA MALTSEVA/AFP/Getty Images)

International Olympic Committee Sports Department’s Director Christophe Dubi (R) and Ukraine’s National Olympic Committee president Sergei Bubka (L) speak as they attend IOC executive board meeting at the SportAccord International Convention in St. Petersburg, on May 31, 2013. (Photo credit should read OLGA MALTSEVA/AFP/Getty Images)

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LAUSANNE, Switzerland (CBSNewYork/AP) — Football took a tiny step closer to potential inclusion in the Olympics on Tuesday.

The IOC’s executive board granted provisional recognition to the international association that oversees the American brand of the sport. The International Federation of American Football (IFAF) had 64 member nations spanning six continents.

USA Football governs the sport in the United States and is associated with the NFL.

A vote on approving football for the Summer Games could take place as early as 2017, with the possibility of the sport joining the Olympics in 2024.

IOC Sports Director Christophe Dubi praised football’s federation for demonstrating “strong youth appeal and making great progress in developing their sport around the world.”

Speaking of “around the world,” the NFL has announced dates for three 2014 regular-season games in London.

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(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)