Following the on-going talks between the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) and government officials regarding the hosting of the postponed European Championships, the Irish government has reiterated its desire to stage part of the tournament in Dublin after the event was rescheduled for the summer of 2021.
The outgoing Minister Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sports Shane Ross, on behalf of the Irish government talks to regarding the matter, he that “while it can be hard at times to see beyond the current public health emergency, we have to plan for the future and happier times”. He said he will now be writing to UEFA to make this commitment official.
“We were all looking forward to hosting the Euros this summer and I am pleased that the Government has recommitted to hosting next year, subject to public health advice,” he added. “Since the outset of this project it has been the goal of the Government, the FAI, Dublin City Council and other stakeholders that Dublin be the best of the 12 hosting cities – that goal remains.”
Earlier, the European Championship governing body said that they remain in contact with the twelve venues it had chosen to host Euro 2020 this summer to make sure that it will be possible to play in those cities with the same schedule following the postponement of the tournament for national teams due to the coronavirus. The venues for the said competition to be staged next year confirmed to be the same.
“UEFA is in contact with all these twelve cities on this matter and will make the corresponding announcements in due course. Euro 2020 will take place between June 11 and July 11, 2021 with the intention of having the same calendar and the same venues,” the governing body expressed to the agency “DPA”.
A recent study predicted that overseas tourists would spend between €106m and €128m with Exchequer revenues of €26m but that is likely to be affected by the recession caused by coronavirus. “It will be a great opportunity to remind the world of how well we can deliver top class sporting events and to boost our international profile in a positive way,” Ross said.
Dublin is due to stage four games, three pool matches and one in the round of 16. Earlier this month, the European football’s governing body UEFA announced that the Euro 2020 play-off matches, due to be played in March and provisionally rescheduled in June, have been postponed indefinitely with a possibility of playing October or November.
Meanwhile, following UEFA’s announcement of new schedule, Michael O’Neill stepped down as Northern Ireland manager after eight-and-a-half years in charge. The 50-year-old, who won two league titles, brought back the nation’s glory in European football, leading Northern Ireland to the knockout rounds at Euro 2016, their first-ever European Championships.
In December 2011, O’Neill helmed the Northern Ireland teams to their first ever European Championships in 30 years – and a place in the knockout stage in France. He also secured a play-off for the 2018 World Cup, losing out narrowly to Switzerland. In qualifying for Euro 2020, Northern Ireland were the closest challengers to Germany and Holland but were pushed into third in the final round