KEIR RADNEDGE REPORTS: European federation UEFA has effectively ruled out any prospects of the Nordic nations bidding for a three or four-nation staging of the European Championship finals in 2024.
So much for all the speculation that this was the reward demanded by Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark for throwing their support behind Aleksander Ceferin’s successful bid to land the UEFA presidency back in September.
The European Championship, expanded to 24 teams since France in June/July, will be organised in a one-off pan-European staging in 2020. It will then revert to the traditional ‘host nation(s)’ format in 2024.
Germany has long been considered the favourite and has reiterated its intention to bid despite the scandal which has tarnished memories of its hosting of the 2006 World Cup finals.
However, the DFB will not be the only pursuer and UEFA’s executive committee has just set the rules.
Joint bids will be allowed, as per Holland/Belgium in 2000, Austria/Switzerland in 2008 and Ukraine/Poland in 2012. However the guaranteed presence of a venue nation team will be permitted “to a maximum of two hosts,” despite the expansion of the finals.
This effectively rules out anything more than a two-country joint bid.
Minimum requirements will be based on nine or 10 stadia, with two or three with at least 50,000 net capacity (preferable one with minimum 60,000); three stadia with at least 40,000 net capacity and four stadia with at least 30,000 net capacity.
The bidding timeline is:
December 6: bidding invitation issued;
March 3: deadline for national associations to confirm their interest;
March 10: announcement of bidders by UEFA;
April 27, 2018: bid dossier submission deadline; and
September 2018: appointment of host(s).
Other UEFA exco decisions for the 2018-21 cycle included:
Lyon will stage the 2018 UEFA Europa League final;
Staggered Champions League kickoff times of 1900 CET and 2100 CET (6pm and 8m BST/GMT) will be introduced to widen the viewer/television/sponsor ‘window’;
The club coefficient used for seeding purposes will no longer include bonus points for previous titles; and
A further €50m will be ‘gifted’ from the Champions League to share among Europa League participants.
European U-21 Chp: Italy 2019
European U-19 Chp: Armenia 2019, Northern Ireland 2020
European U-17 Chp: Republic of Ireland 2019, Estonia 2020
European Women’s U-19 Chp: Scotland 2019, Georgia 2020
European Women’s U-17 Chp: Bulgaria 2019, Sweden 2020
Futsal Cup: Almaty, Kazakhstan 2017
** Giorgio Marchetti, UEFA’s director of competitions, has been appointed UEFA deputy general secretary.