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The general manager of the Los Angeles Coliseum expressed optimism concerning the possibility of a franchise playing there in four years.

The league has expressed its desire to have a franchise in that area in 2008 or 2009, with the Coliseum a candidate along with the Rose Bowl in Pasadena and sites in Anaheim, Carson and perhaps El Toro where stadiums would have to be built.

"The NFL is really intent on getting something done in Los Angeles," Pat Lynch said. "We're talking all the time. We're very hopeful. We think we're making decent progress. The time lines we hope can work in our favor.

"We're far down the road in all respects. They'll be going through their process. Right now, we're just happy to be going through the process rather than being on the outside looking in."

The Los Angeles area has been without a franchise since the Raiders left the Coliseum to return to Oakland and the Rams moved from Anaheim to St. Louis before the 1995 season.

Lynch said a stadium at the Coliseum would be new _ not a refurbishment _ and that the league would foot the bill.

"It will be state-of-the-art," Lynch said. "It is in our term sheet that they have accepted our design. They're going to spend $450-million. We are willing to turn the keys over to the (league) owners. We're not putting in a dime."

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