Finland's Olli Rehn was named on Friday to the key role of economic and monetary affairs commissioner in the European Union executive, in which he will drive efforts to revive the European economy.

Following are five facts about Rehn, 47, who takes over from Spaniard Joaquin Almunia, having served as commissioner for EU enlargement from November 2004.

* Born in Mikkeli, some 230 km (140 miles) north of Helsinki, he is married with one child.

* A noted soccer fan, Rehn played for his hometown club Mikkelin Palloilijat in Finland's top division and was chairman of the Football League of Finland from 1996 to 1997.

* He served as a member of the Finnish parliament from 1991 until 1995, the hardest years of the Finnish recession, in a Centre Party-led coalition. He had previously served as a special adviser to the then prime minister, Esko Aho.

* Rehn holds a doctorate in international political economy from Britain's Oxford University, with a thesis titled Corporatism and Industrial Competitiveness in Small European States. He also studied political science at the University of Helsinki and economics, international relations and journalism in the United States, at Macalester College, St Paul, Minnesota.

* His CV lists him as an auto spare parts salesman (during holidays) in Mikkeli from 1975-1982.