Coronavirus crisis causes UEFA to delay Euro 2020 until summer of 2021
FOOTBALL By Mirror | March 12th 2020
European football bosses have come up with a sensational plan to postpone Euro 2020 for a year.
UEFA and the European Clubs Association will put forward their proposal to delay the tournament until 2021 at their emergency coronavirus video conference meeting next Tuesday.
But Mirror Sport can reveal the plan involves scrapping this summer’s tournament and cancelling the end-of-season international fixture window at the start of June.
They would then be able to reschedule any outstanding domestic league games, finish off any championships with La Liga and Serie A currently suspended because of coronavirus.
UEFA would also look to complete the Champions League and Europa League fixtures which are also in jeopardy because of the virus and countries being under lockdown.
It is still just a proposal and potential solution. The 55 national associations would have to agree but Mirror Sport understands that the leading lights in UEFA and the influential ECA group believe that is the most viable option. The international break at the end of this month is also in major doubt. England's friendlies with Italy and Denmark are set to be cancelled but Premier League clubs have held secret talks among themselves and are reluctant to let their foreign stars travel overseas for international games given the coronavirus risk.
England are due to play Austria and Romania in early June ahead of the Euros with their three Group games also scheduled at Wembley which was supposed to be glorious summer for the country.
But that is looking less likely by the day because of the unique nature of the tournament which is being spread across different countries and would therefore heighten the risk of coronavirus being spread.
It can also be revealed there is widespread disbelief among major European clubs - Italy is in meltdown and facing a health crisis while Real Madrid are in self isolation with La Liga games suspended - at English football carrying on.
Premier League bosses are expecting this week’s games to go ahead as normal with crowds but that will only be confirmed after the Government’s Cobra security meeting on Thursday.
The FA and EFL are also waiting on further instructions with several clubs fearing coronavirus as Arsenal put players into self-isolation this week and Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers claiming three players have also shown symptoms.
But it is believed the Government want the Premier League to carry on under any circumstance, although games being played behind closed doors from next week is a strong possibility.
Chelsea have denied they have had a coronavirus scare and are just doing a deep clean of their training ground while they are hoping their Champions League game at Bayern Munich will go ahead next week. Manchester City ’s tie with Real Madrid has been called off.
UEFA are now taking drastic action next week and “nothing is off the table” at those discussions but Euro 2020 is now in serious doubt. The UEFA statement said: “In the light of the ongoing developments in the spread of Covid-19 across Europe and the changing analysis of the World Health Organisation, UEFA has today invited representatives of its 55 member associations, together with the boards of the European Club Association and the European Leagues and a representative of FIFPro, to attend meetings by videoconference on Tuesday 17 March to discuss European football’s response to the outbreak.
"Discussions will include all domestic and European competitions, including UEFA EURO 2020.
"Further communication will be made following those meetings.”
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