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Stadiums in frame to host Euro 2028 matches with UK and Ireland bid given green light

In this article we take a look at the stadiums in frame to host Euro 2028 matches with the UK and Ireland bid given green light.

The 2028 European Championship is set to take place in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland with the joint hosts to be handed the tournament without facing competition from other bids.

Turkey are expected to withdraw their candidacy as they failed in two recent bids to host the Euros in 2016 and 2024 and want to avoid being beaten again, while Russia’s planned bid is a non-starter according to the Daily Mail given the country’s suspension from international sport.

UEFA are understood to be receptive to an unopposed contest due to the war in eastern Europe and all of their 55 national associations struggling financially after incurring huge losses during the pandemic.

The formal bidding process was due to drag on until September 2023, but, if only one bid is received. UEFA will announce the hosts far earlier, assuming the UK and Ireland effort meets the organisers’ technical requirements, which is regarded as a formality.

The five football associations — of England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland — only announced their intention to bid for the tournament last month having ruled out a more ambitious campaign to land the 2030 World Cup.

Ahead of the the 23rd of March deadline for registering a bid, they appear to be the only runners, after the Turkish FA made clear to UEFA that they would only bid for the tournament if they were unopposed and Russia were ruled out following Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

Stadiums in frame to host Euro 2028 matches with UK and Ireland bid given green light

UEFA had strongly encouraged a UK and Ireland bid whilst having talks last year as they are regarded as risk-free hosts who could deliver a financially successfully tournament in front of passionate fans in packed stadiums.

Euro 2024 is to be held in Germany and UEFA executives have expressed a strong desire for the next competition to be held in another major market that can guarantee huge profits after the European competition organiser incurred losses of around £700million last year due to the Covid pandemic.

The trouble that flared up at last summer’s Euro 2020 final at Wembley has not been held against the FA’s involvement in the bid, with UEFA viewing it as a one-off event caused by England’s first major final appearance for 55 years and a mass release of frustration following the emergence from lockdown — as well as placing much of the blame at the door of the Metropolitan Police for their poor security operation.

Other than the final, the rest of the matches played in England in 2021 were viewed as a success with UEFA grateful to the FA for stepping in to host additional games at Wembley at late notice and for the pressure they put on the Government to give exemptions from Covid travel restrictions to their visiting dignitaries.

It is expected that UEFA will increase the size of the competition from 24 to 32 teams for Euro 2028 so a minimum of 12 host grounds will be needed.

The one major issue to resolve is how to ensure matches can take place in Northern Ireland as, with a capacity of just 18,500, Windsor Park in Belfast does not meet UEFA’s tournament criteria for all stadiums to have a minimum capacity of 30,000, so a new ground may need to be built.

Dublin’s Aviva Stadium, the Principality in Cardiff and Glasgow’s Hampden Park are no doubt going to be used, while Edinburgh’s Murrayfield and Croke Park in Dublin are also under consideration.

The grand final is expected to take place at Wembley but competition among English venues for other games will be fierce, particularly in London.

The impressive new Tottenham Hotspur Stadium could feature, while Arsenal’s Emirates or West Ham’s London Stadium could miss out.

Organisers will aim to achieve a geographical spread across the country leading to choices between Premier League grounds Villa Park and the King Power Stadium in the Midlands, Old Trafford and the Etihad in Manchester, Anfield and Everton’s proposed new stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock on Merseyside and Newcastle’s St James’ Park or Leeds’ Elland Road.

Twitter users reacted with stadiums in frame to host Euro 2028 matches as the UK and Ireland bid is given an unopposed green light…

@h0rizn_: UK and Ireland set to host Euro 2028 i’m absolutely going to bare matches for that

@PickardsTours: 😍😍😍😍 Time to get them caps up!!!

@mattknights1997: 6 years for fans to learn how to behave at finals.

@Jskiihy: hhahahahaha what couldn’t go wrong ere 🤣🤣🤣

@_mstephenson88: Luckily we have some crackers before then and hopefully Uruguay / Argentina after

@nickyjpower: @FCIsleOfMan Imagine one of the international teams setting up base at yours. At Euro96 the Czech Rep set up camp in Preston and used @BamberBridgeFC as a warm up match. They reached the final too.

@joshmaniquiz1: Euro 2028 Final at Hampden sounds like a class day out

@Kovacic_era: Croke Park will be incredible, one of my favourite stadiums

@brvdnx: Only time Ireland will qualify.

@DanHallas: Euro 2028 in UK & Ireland… 🙄 ffs

@kkc1882: The UK and Ireland hosting Euro 28, can’t wait for the English to give us all a bad name 👏🏼

@BarringtonJF: Oh FFS, not what we need

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