UEFA confirms Euro 2020 postponed until next year

Euro 2020

UEFA has confirmed Euro 2020 has been postponed for 12 months due to the coronavirus outbreak and will instead take place during the summer of 2021.

It was a decision that was widely expected to be made by UEFA following the outbreak that led to Champions League and Europa League matches being suspended this week, as well as the majority of leagues across Europe being put on hiatus until next month at the earliest.

UEFA held a conference call with all 55 national football associations on Tuesday before announcing their decision to delay the European Championship by 12 months, with the health and safety of everyone the governing body’s main concern.

The decision has also been made to allow domestic competitions across Europe to reach a conclusion, with the likes of the Premier League, Serie A and La Liga all currently postponed.

It seems unlikely those leagues will resume next month, with UEFA confirming all matches for both clubs and national teams have been put on hold until further notice.

However, UEFA has said the Euro 2020 play-off matches, originally set to take place at the end this month, will be rescheduled for June, but that remains subject to change.

The provisional new dates for the European Championship are June 11 to July 11 next year although it remains to be seen whether that will mean the European Under-21 Championship and Women’s European Championship, which are also scheduled to take place that summer, will be moved or held as well.

The UEFA Nations League Finals were also set to take place that summer but it seems almost certain they will be postponed until a later date, although there is no word as yet whether the group format of that competition, set to take place this autumn, will also be delayed or rearranged.

UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin has been quick to praise all the associations for backing the decision to postpone Euro 2020 and pulling together at such an uncertain time.

“It is at times like these that the football community needs to show responsibility, unity, solidarity and altruism,” Ceferin said.

“The health of fans, staff and players has to be our number one priority and, in that spirit, UEFA tabled a range of options, so that competitions can finish this season safely, and I am proud of the response of my colleagues across European football.”

UEFA is not the only body to have delayed a tournament in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. Earlier on Tuesday, the South American Football Confederation (Conmebol) announced this year’s Copa America has also been delayed by 12 months.