Earlier this week, the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) officials met representatives of the 12 host cities of the rescheduled EURO 2020, in a routine meeting that focuses onoperational matters relating to the tournament. Once again, UEFA reiterated its commitment to holding the tournamentacross the 12 cities in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
“UEFA is committed to holding Euro 2020 in the 12 cities originally planned. The Euro is the flagship competition for national team football in Europe and is a vital source of funding for grassroots and wider football development,” UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin said in a statement. The European Championships was forced to be delayed for a year and now due to run from June 11 to July 11.
“I am optimistic that things are highly likely to be very different with regard to the virus as we move closer to the tournament and it is important that we give the host cities and governments as much time as we can to formulate an accurate picture of what will be possible come June and July,” Ceferin added. UEFA added that it hadn’t finalized plans to accommodate fans inside stadiums.
UEFA also announced that they pushed back the deadline for submitting plans to accommodate fans inside stadiums to early April. “Fans are such a big part of what makes football special and that is true of the EURO as much as it is of any game. We must allow ourselves the maximum space to allow their return to the stadiums,” the statement reads.
Initially, Munich, Rome, St Petersburg and Baku will host quarter-finals as well as group-stage clashes, while Copenhagen, Bucharest, Amsterdam, Dublin, Bilbao, Glasgow and Budapest are the other venues, staging group-stage and last-16 encounters. Earlier, Ceferin confirmed that there will be no changes in the venue. “For now, the plan is to play in all 12 countries,” Ceferinsaid.
Ceferin also revealed that there will be “backup options” in case a host country faced a problem. “We are ready to organisecompetitions in 11, 10 or nine cities… and even only in one country, if necessary. However, I am 99.9 per cent sure that we will have the European Championship in all 12 cities, as planned,” he said. Ceferin has earlier insisted that he’s desperate for full houses at next summer’s Finals.
UEFA has earlier said it is planning for different scenarios in all of Euro 2020’s host cities. In statement the football body said: “UEFA together with the 12 host cities is currently working on four operational scenarios for UEFA EURO 2020 (full stadium; 50-100% capacity with various mitigation measures; 20-30% capacity with various mitigation measures; and behind closed doors).”