In a statement last weekend, the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) has postponed the European Championships or the Euro 2020 will resume after a year due to the threat of global pandemic, COVID, which is currently crippling European countries. Questions were raised on whether it will still be called on its original name or they will follow the year of hosting, which is 2021.
In a separate statement, three days after the announcing the postponement, the governing body said that “the tournament will still be known as UEFA Euro 2020”. However, the said statement was later clarified that statement as an error and added “no decision has yet been made on the name of the rearranged Euro.” Both statements were recently posted on Twitter.
Meanwhile, the venues for the said competition to be staged next year will remain the same. In a statement, UEFA claim that there are no plans to change the identity of the 12 hosts. “We trust that all of our venues will remain the same, ensuring the tournament remains true to its original vision,” read a statement. “That is staging a truly Europe-wide event that befits the tournament’s 60th birthday.”
In 2014, UEFA have allocated fixtures in 13 cities across Europe. However, Brussels later withdrawn their staging participation when a stadium construction lacked support from local authorities. The four games in Brussels were allocated to Wembley Stadium in London. Held every four years, Euro is considered the most popular football tournament next to the World Cup in terms of international prestige.
“The plan is to have the same venues, the same cities, the same stadiums,” UEFA president, Aleksander Ceferin said. “But if anything gets complicated, then we can as well do it with 11, then nine or less stadiums. But the plan is that everything stays the same.” The venue for the finals will still be in Wembley as confirmed by FA chief executive Mark Bullingham.
The governing body also said the postponement “will help all domestic competitions, currently on hold due to the COVID-19 emergency, to be completed”, highlighting their commitment to finish club seasons by June 30. As of now, twenty of the 24 nations have already booked their place in the Euro, but playoffs to determine the final four participants, originally scheduled this month, have been postponed.
The European Championship generates around €2 billion for UEFA from sponsors and broadcasters. It means a lot nowadays as the cost of postponing the 24-team, 51-game tournament will slash “hundreds of millions” of euros (dollars), according to Ceferin. “The economic situation in Europe and in the world will harm us as well,” Ceferin said in a separate interview.
Ticket refund was already announced, with UEFA saying that they “will proactively contact all ticket holders in due course.” They are also reassuring existing ticket buyers that if they cannot attend in 2021, they will get a full refund on their tickets.Euro 2020 will now take place from June 11 to July 11 in 2021. The finals of the Nations League, due to be played between June 2 and June 6 2021, will be moved.