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Ireland's participation as a co-host of Euro 2020 in doubt over fan attendance concerns

Ross Jackson
Apr 7, 2021, 5:15 PM GMT+1
The FAI has said they cannot guarantee spectators will be allowed to attend games in Ireland
The FAI has said they cannot guarantee spectators will be allowed to attend games in Ireland | Charles McQuillan/Getty Images
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The FAI have notified UEFA that they cannot guarantee fans will be allowed to attend Euro 2020 fixtures in Dublin this summer due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, casting doubts over their ability to co-host the tournament.

The Aviva Stadium in Dublin was one of 12 arenas across Europe chosen to host clashes in this summer's upcoming delayed Euro 2020, with Poland, Slovakia and Sweden all playing at Ireland's national stadium in the group stages before it would then play host to a round of 16 clash.

However, with UEFA hoping eased lockdown restrictions would mean limited fans could attend games this summer, the FAI have now confirmed they cannot guarantee they will be in a position to allow fans into the Aviva Stadium.

In a statement released on the FAI's official website, they explained they were unable to provide such assurances, though they would be continually reviewing the situation and would be in regular contact with UEFA.

"The Football Association of Ireland, on advice and guidance from the Government, has today notified UEFA that owing to the COVID-19 pandemic it is not in a position at this point to provide assurances on minimum spectator levels at the UEFA Euro 2020 matches due to be held in Dublin in June," the statement read.

"In so doing, we have advised UEFA that the matter will be kept under review and that the Dublin LOS team including Government will continue to discuss all issues with UEFA on an ongoing basis.

"All partners of the Local Organising Structure - Government, the FAI, Aviva Stadium and Dublin City Council - recognise the challenges presented by spectator attendance at Aviva Stadium for the scheduled hosting of four matches at Euro 2020 this summer and that public health issues are the most important consideration in the organisation of the project.

The Aviva Stadium may not be hosting part of Euro 2020 anymore
The Aviva Stadium may not be hosting part of Euro 2020 anymore | Dan Mullan/Getty Images

FAI chief executive Jonathan Hill added that they would now eagerly await UEFA's response to the news before considering their options.

“We have made our submission to UEFA today and now await their response once submissions from all twelve host cities have been received and considered," he said.

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