UEFA is "out of order" in demanding fans be present during Euro 2020 games considering Covid-19 infection levels, Ireland's Prime Minister said on Sunday, days after the country was stripped of four matches for refusing to guarantee attendance.
"I thought UEFA were out of order, quite frankly, putting that condition on countries," Prime Minister Micheál Martin told RTE television in an interview.
"If you look at what's happening all over Europe in terms of the B117 (Covid-19 variant) and in terms of the high incidence in European member state countries, to ... be putting obligations on countries to force spectators in prematurely in my view it was a wrong call," he said. "I never thought it was a realistic proposition."
England hit with Wembley ban after crowd trouble at Euro 2020 final
Euro 2020 runs from June 11 to July 11 having been postponed last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Ireland has one of the lowest Covid-19 infection rates in Europe but is opting for a slower reopening of its economy than most of its European peers after the relaxation of measures in December triggered a huge spike in cases.
Twitter reveals scale of racism in UK after England Euro 2020 final defeat
'I knew straight away' - Referee on Eriksen's Euro 2020 collapse