UK prime minister Boris Johnson has said the country would be willing to host more Euro 2020 matches this summer, while he is also keen to stage the 2030 World Cup across the UK and Ireland.
Wembley is already playing host to the semi-finals and final of the European Championships, as well as England’s three group games and one round of 16 match.
But with uncertainty growing over whether the tournament could be held across 12 cities around the continent due to the coronavirus pandemic, talk of the UK – or at the very least, England – potentially hosting the entire Euros has been gathering momentum.
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Speaking to The Sun, Johnson said staging more Euros matches is a distinct possibility, but added the decision was in UEFA’s hands.
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“We are hosting the Euros,” he said. “We are hosting the semis and the final. If there’s, you know, if they want any other matches that they want hosted, we’re certainly on for that but at the moment that’s where we are with UEFA.”
Johnson also talked up the prospects of the UK and Ireland hosting the World Cup in nine years’ time.
He added. “We are very, very keen to bring football home in 2030. I do think it’s the right place.
It’s the home of football, it’s the right time. It will be an absolutely wonderful thing for the country.
The Sun added that chancellor Rishi Sunak’s Budget announcement on Wednesday will earmark £2.8m towards the UK and Ireland’s official pitch to FIFA to host the World Cup.
Spain and Portugal have registered their interest in making a joint-bid to host the World Cup, so too Romania, Greece, Bulgaria and Serbia.
Uruguay, Argentina, Paraguay and Chile have also teamed together, while Morocco is expected to make a fresh bid after missing out on the 2026 tournament to Canada, USA and Mexico.
What are the current Euro 2021 plans?
The 12 host cities are Amsterdam (Netherlands), Baku (Azerbaijan), Bilbao (Spain), Bucharest (Romania), Budapest (Hungary), Copenhagen (Denmark), Dublin (Ireland), Glasgow (Scotland), London (England), Munich (Germany), Rome (Italy) and St Petersburg (Russia).
In January, UEFA said it remained committed to hosting the tournament, as planned, across 12 cities.
UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin said: “UEFA is committed to holding Euro 2020 in the 12 cities originally planned. The Euros is the flagship competition for national team football in Europe and is a vital source of funding for grassroots and wider football development.
“I am optimistic that things are highly likely to be very different with regard to the virus as we move closer to the tournament and it is important that we give the host cities and governments as much time as we can to formulate an accurate picture of what will be possible come June and July.
“Fans are such a big part of what makes football special and that is true of the Euros as much as it is of any game. We must allow ourselves the maximum space to allow their return to the stadiums.”
Last week, a tweet from beIN Sports correspondent Tancredi Palmeri suggested England were “very likely” to be the sole hosts of the tournament, adding a decision would be made in mid-April.
It remains unclear whether that would include Scotland, who are due to host matches in Glasgow, while no further details have been released regarding which stadiums across the country could help stage the tournament.
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