Russia to remain one of the hosts of Euro 2020 matches despite Olympics, World Cup ban

Earlier this week, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) ordered that Russia’s four-year-ban for doping scandal has been lowered to two years. The ban prevents Russia from competing in the delayed Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics and the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. However, Russia will be still able to host next year matches of the Euro 2020 and the final match of the Champions League.

In a statement, the Lausanne-based court said Russia’s ban previously imposed by World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) was reduced to two years over the Russian anti-doping body’s objection to the WADA’s sanction. Russia will complete its international ban on December16, 2022, but in this period Russian anthem cannot be played or sung in any official event, CAS added.

In December 2019, Russia was banned from major international sporting competitions, including the Olympics and the World Cup for four years over doping fiasco. Following the recent findings of the WADA, it suggests that “an extremely serious case of noncompliance with the requirement to provide an authentic copy of the Moscow data, with several aggravating features.”

Russia’s second largest city of Saint Petersburg will stage all matches of Russia in the tournament next year. Home to FC Zenit Saint Petersburg since April 2017, Saint Petersburg Stadium held seven fixtures at the 2018 World Cup. Matches to be staged in this arena are: Belgium v Russia; Finland v Russia; Finland v Belgium; Quarter final: W41 v W42.

Stanislav Cherchesov’s Russia booked its place in finals of the Euro 2020 after thrashing 10-man Cyprus 5-0 on their own soil in Nicosia last year. Cherchesov’s side needed only draw to ensure a top-two finish and qualification, but an early strike scored by Denis Cheryshev in the ninth minute secured them an initial qualification to the tournament.

Earlier, the head of the Local Organizing Committee (LOC) Russia-2020 have announced over 40 Russian cities across the country are set to be a “fan zone” areas for fans who wishes to witness football action in the postponed Euro 2020 next year, if the coronavirus remains uncontainable as the tournament commence.