| 12.5°C Dublin

euro doubts Ireland in danger of losing Euro 2020 matches after FAI issue statement over fans

Close

A general view of the Aviva Stadium which is due to host three Euro 2020 games this summer. Photo credit: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.

A general view of the Aviva Stadium which is due to host three Euro 2020 games this summer. Photo credit: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.

A general view of the Aviva Stadium which is due to host three Euro 2020 games this summer. Photo credit: Brian Lawless/PA Wire.

The Football Association of Ireland have issued a statement to confirm they are currently unable to offer assurances that fans would be allowed to attend matches due to be staged in Dublin as part of this summer's European Championship finals.

The European governing body has asked for the 12 host cities – including Glasgow, Dublin and London – for their proposals on how many fans they expect to be able to accommodate by Wednesday.

Now the FAI have put their hopes of holding on to their allocation of games at serious risk by confirming they are not in a position to issue a guarantee that fans will be allowed to attend.

The statement reads:

"The Football Association of Ireland, on advice and guidance from the Government, has today notified UEFA that owing to the COVID-19 pandemic it is not in a position at this point to provide assurances on minimum spectator levels at the UEFA EURO 2020 matches due to be held in Dublin in June. In so doing, we have advised UEFA that the matter will be kept under review and that the Dublin LOS team including Government will continue to discuss all issues with UEFA on an ongoing basis.

"All partners of the Local Organising Structure – Government, the FAI, Aviva Stadium and Dublin City Council - recognise the challenges presented by spectator attendance at Aviva Stadium for the scheduled hosting of four matches at EURO 2020 this summer and that public health issues are the most important consideration in the organisation of the project.

FAI Chief Executive Jonathan Hill said: "We have made our submission to UEFA today and now await their response once submissions from all 12 host cities have been received and considered."

The UK Government has announced plans for a number of test events – including a 21,000 crowd for the FA Cup final on May 15 – with a view to having Wembley full for at least some European Championship games.

Wembley will see England open their Group D campaign against Croatia on June 13, before then welcoming Scotland on June 18 followed by the Czech Republic.

The national stadium is also set to host one last-16 game as well as both the semi-finals and then final on July 11.

On Tuesday, Scotland First Minister Nicola Sturgeon was optimistic there would be a “reasonably good number” of supporters at Hampden for matches against the Czechs on June 14 and then Croatia eight days later.

The Italian Football Federation, however, said it had been told by the government that Rome’s Stadio Olimpico would be able to welcome spectators for Euro 2020.

Following the submissions, a meeting will be held on Thursday of the EURO Steering Group, which consists of the 12 national associations and UEFA.

Once hosts have submitted the scenarios, they will be allowed to come back to UEFA before April 28 with an increased view on how many supporters they could accommodate.

If Ireland are to lose their Euro 2020 matches, it is likely they will be moved to Wembley Stadium in London.

Download the Sunday World app

Now download the free app for all the latest Sunday World News, Crime, Irish Showbiz and Sport. Available on Apple and Android devices

Online Editors


Top Videos





Privacy