Fourteen years is enough time for every star in our soccer skies to fade into retirement. In terms of major tournaments, however, it’s the horizon. Given the scope of World Cups and European Championships, the timelines get a little more drawn out, with bidding countries needing more and more time to execute their extravagant visions.
That’s why England’s Football Association chairman is already talking about Euro 2028; or, more specifically, England’s hopes of hosting the tournament. According to Greg Dyke, the nation which last hosted a major competition in 1996 is hoping to bring UEFA’s championship back to English soil.
From The Guardian, with Dyke noting England is already vying to host the 2020 final:
“I think if we get the final for 2020 it is unlikely we would be awarded 2024, so we won’t bid for that if we get the final,” Dyke said. “We might well bid for 2028.
“We will bid again for the World Cup at some stage but I wouldn’t be as optimistic of our chances as I would be for the Euros.”
The only other time England hosted the European Championship, the Three Lions reached the semifinals in 1996. England also hosted the 1966 World Cup, defeating West Germany 4-2 in the final to claim its only World Cup.
As for 2028, we’re a long way from a decision. UEFA is still determining host cities for some games in 2020 (a pan-Europe tournament). Presumably that will happen before deciding 2024’s hosts. Then comes 2028.
But England, hungry to get another major, is already making plans. And some town in Greater Manchester, there may an 11-year-old set to become the next Geoff Hurst. The stars of 2028 are still on the playground.