UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin has revealed that he “would not support” staging another European Championship in multiple countries across the continent, as EURO 2020 has been, as “it is not correct” and “too challenging” that some teams (and their fans) traveled as few as 600 miles between games, while others traversed over 6,000.
To celebrate the 60th anniversary of the tournament, EURO 2020 was originally set to be played in 13 different cities, but that number was reduced to 12 after plans to build a new national stadium in Brussels were abandoned, and again down to 11 after Dublin couldn’t guarantee that fans would be allowed inside due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ultimately, EURO 2020 games were played in London, Glasgow, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, St Petersburg, Seville, Munich, Baku, Rome, Bucharest and Budapest — quotes from the BBC:
“I would not support it anymore.
“In a way, it is not correct that some teams have to travel more than [6,000 miles] while others have to only travel [600 miles].
“It is not fair to fans, who had to be in Rome one day and in Baku over the next few, which is a four-and-a-half-hour flight.
“We had to travel a lot, into countries with different jurisdictions, different currencies, countries in the European Union and non-EU, so it was not easy.
“It was a format that was decided before I came [into post] and I respect it. It is an interesting idea but it is hard to implement and I don’t think we will do it again.”
“I would not support it any more..I don’t think we will do it again.”
UEFA President Alexsander Ceferin tells me the pan-continental model of Euro 2020 should be scrapped.
— Dan Roan (@danroan) July 9, 2021
EURO 2024 will be played, in its entirety, in Germany.
It should be noted that, while Ceferin only now (48 hours ahead of the final) admits the logistics of EURO 2020 were far from ideal for teams and their fans, the majority of the outside world (i.e., anyone not set to profit off every off of nearly every game being played inside stadiums with a capacity of more than 50,000) criticized UEFA for those very reasons when the format was announced in 2014.
It’s also worth pointing out that even though Ceferin was not president of UEFA in 2014 (Michel Platini still held the post at that time), he was part of the UEFA legal committee at that time and has been UEFA president since 2016.