How Euro 2020 was saved


A cancellation, said Ceferin, would have been a devastating financial blow that would have jeopardized the future of some associations that rely on scholarships from the European Football Association for their very existence.

“If you move, you can negotiate and the loss is less,” said Ceferin. “But when you say, ‘We’re not going to play at all,’ that’s a big, big financial impact.”

After a few weeks of considering their options – including raising and then refusing to host the entire tournament in Russia or England – and debating with a dizzying variety of partners, from politicians to stadium owners, sponsors and broadcasters, the hard work was around the multinational Saving Mosaic began again.

The first calls were problem-free. The postponement of the tournament to the same dates a year later resolved the scheduling problems, and there the goods with the Euro 2020 Once branding had been sent, the name of the tournament would be retained.

By autumn 2020, it was decided to stay as close as possible to the original plan, with an important guarantee: Even in the midst of the pandemic, every host city would have to take precautions to allow fans to attend the games.

The request seemed arduous and resulted in a tense exchange between UEFA and national and regional governments. The decision, officials said, was made in part out of financial necessity – UEFA’s financial projections for the tournament were revised down by at least € 300 million ($ 366 million) – but organizers agreed that the The return of the fans, even with reduced capacity, was symbolically important.

“We want to return to normal in life and we want to return to normal in football stadiums,” said Kallen. Crowds at a big event like the European Championship, UEFA had decided to send that signal.

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