Airport rule leaves Wales struggling over Euro 2020 bid
UEFA is set to decree that Euro 2020 venues must be served by an airport with at least two terminals – meaning that Cardiff’s Millennium Stadium would face a struggle to be chosen.
With 13 cities involved, the European governing body is anxious to ensure that air travel will not be an issue.
One of the criteria laid down by planners is that each host city must have two airports or, at a minimum, two terminals so the two sets of fans can be kept apart. That is likely to be something of a headache for Cardiff – its airport has a single terminal, and the Welsh FA would have to argue that Bristol or even airports further afield could be used as an alternative for fans.
Dublin and Glasgow are also expected to bid to host group matches at Euro 2020, which, for the first time, is to be held across Europe instead of in one or two countries. The Football Association is to bid to host the semi-finals and final at Wembley, or group matches and quarter-finals if that is unsuccessful.
Rival bids for the final are expected from Istanbul – the favourite if it is unsuccessful in its 2020 Olympic bid – plus Madrid, Berlin and Rome. Two cities with smaller-capacity stadiums will be among the 13 chosen as Euro 2020 hosts in an effort to broaden the reach of the tournament, according to sources close to the process. Officials drawing up plans for the tournament have decreed that two host cities can have a stadium capacity as low as 30,000, that ten stadiums will have a 50,000 minimum capacity and four of those hosting the quarter-finals to have grounds of at least 60,000.
The stadium that hosts the two semi-finals and final will have to be able to seat more than 70,000 fans.
Meanwhile, Britain’s historic Fifa vice-presidency is set to be saved from threatened extinction after European football associations unanimously decided to back moves to retain the post.
The 53 Uefa countries will elect the British representative themselves, however, rather than merely accept the nomination of the four home nations.
The new policy was agreed as part of Uefa’ proposals for Fifa reforms. The British Fifa vice-presidency has existed since 1946 with the idea it is shared between the four home nations.
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Thursday 20 June 2013
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