In the midst of the brutal coronavirus pandemic, UEFA’s representatives held a tele-conference call on March 17th. Members of all 55 continental national associations participated and agreed on a number of crucial decisions in regards to European football.
The key decision was to postpone the European Championship a year. Instead of this summer, the biggest national team competition on the continent will be held from June 12th to July 12th, 2021. The aim is to free space for domestic and continental club competitions to be completed in the summer of 2020. With top football betting tips experts from bettingtips4You.com we have looked at what this means for the competition and for the teams.
The biggest crisis that football has ever seen
UEFA’s president Aleksander Ceferin described the current situation as the greatest crisis the sport has seen in its long history. The postponement was an expected decision made for a greater cause. Both Ceferin and FIFA’s president Gianni Infantino confirmed the full support of all 55 associations that were part of the mentioned tele-conference meeting.
The financial losses will be massive. We are talking about hundreds of millions of Euros. You can only imagine how football fans across the continent feel, especially since this was supposed to be the inaugural Euro to be played in multiple countries. The competition will be held next year in the same format, with 12 distinct countries hosting it. The same venues, including those in Dublin, Glasgow, and London will host matches.
The follow-up decisions
The postponement of the men’s largest football continental competition for national teams could cause several other changes. The women’s European Championship, which was scheduled just for the next summer, is likely going to be postponed for the summer of 2022. UEFA would thus avoid having two big events at the same time since FIFA’s World’s Cup 2022 is meant to be played in November/December.
The Under 21 European Championship is another concern as it should take place at the same time (the summer of 2021). There is a high chance this competition is also going to be postponed a year.
Other associations reacted similarly as Copa America was postponed a year and will be played in the summer of 2021, just like Euro. The African Nations Championship was scheduled for April this year in Cameroon but will be postponed without doubt as well.
Domestic leagues & club continental competitions
The aforementioned decision will leave space for all domestic leagues to be completed in the summer of 2020 (instead of Euro). With hopes the pandemic will disappear by that time, all major leagues should finish the seasons in June.
Additionally, the Champions League final was rescheduled and should be played on June 27th, three days after the Europa League final. The venues remained unchanged. However, the calendar formats might be changed so the games could be played as soon as possible (in accordance with governments’ health and travel policies). The Champions League/Europa League matches are usually played in mid-week but do not get surprised to see the fixtures of these competitions scheduled for the weekends this summer.
What does this mean for England?
The Three Lions could significantly profit due to the postponement of the Euro. Tottenham’s talisman and England’s captain Harry Kane was injured for quite some time. The striker was expected to miss the group phase of the major tournament. Gareth Southgate had plenty of problems with the list of injured players, especially in the attacking line. Marcus Rashford, Tammy Abraham, and Jamie Vardy were all sidelined for their respective teams lately and their form would be more than questionable this summer.
If they avoid new injuries next year, England should have the strongest line-up possible at Euro 2021.