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FA and FAW Submit EURO 2020 Bids

Fri 25th Apr 2014 | Club & Country Competitions

The FA has submitted a bid to host one of the 13 UEFA Euro 2020 packages.

English football’s governing body has expressed an interest in two packages – one group stage as well as the semi-finals and final package.

The FA joins Wales and Scotland who submitted their bid yesterday as nations to have expressed interest in hosting matches during the Europe wide tournament.

UEFA opened the bidding process for associations to express their interest in hosting either one of the 12 group stage packages, or to be the host city of both semi-finals and the final. Associations can apply for more than one package, but can only be awarded one.

The bidding nations will be announced on Saturday 26 April - and a final decision as to which bids have been successful will be announced by UEFA in Geneva on 19 September.

FA general secretary Alex Horne said: “I would like to thank everyone involved in The FA’s bid to host part of the UEFA Euro 2020 tournament, including the Mayor of London, the Greater London Authority and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport - along with our various partners across the capital and the country as a whole.

“We are bidding for either of the two packages available and with our recent experience of hosting two UEFA Champions League Finals in the last four years we believe that Wembley Stadium and London represent a strong bid for UEFA to consider.

“We recognise UEFA is considering many strong bids from a number of candidate cities and we welcome the opportunity to put forward our bid.”

The decision to hold a "Euro for Europe" completion in 2020 was taken to mark the European Championship's 60th anniversary.

Cardiff’s Millennium Stadium is at the heart of the Football Association of Wales’ bid to secure a package of matches consisting of three group games plus either a last 16 or a quarter final match.

Jonathan Ford, Chief Executive of the FAW said, “The FAW is thrilled to submit its UEFA EURO 2020 bid and we believe that we have a strong and compelling proposition. The Millennium Stadium, with a capacity of almost 75,000 as well as 100 hospitality boxes, would generate a significant financial contribution for UEFA. 

“In terms of transport, our bid is supported by both Cardiff and Bristol airports who have signed service level agreements outlining their delivery of UEFA’s EURO 2020 tournament requirements. Both airports are able to operate 24 hours a day and are easily accessible from Cardiff city centre.

“By 2020, rail links to London will be down to just 90 minutes and when you also consider Birmingham, the FAW is able to offer four international airports within two hours of Cardiff, thus providing UEFA and all UEFA EURO 2020 spectators with multiple airport options to choose from. 

“All UEFA EURO 2020 ticket holders will also benefit from free travel on buses and trains including the transport connections linking Cardiff city centre with both Cardiff and Bristol airports. We have a strong accommodation plan with the majority of UEFA’s own accommodation requirements located within walking distance of the Millennium Stadium.

"Through working with our numerous accommodation partners, the FAW is also able to offer UEFA EURO 2020 spectators with a choice of 41,000 beds, all located within an hour of Cardiff and in locations covered by the FAW’s free travel offer.” 

Ford added that legacy is an important focus of the bid plans, saying, “In order to help ensure a lasting positive impact from hosting this prestigious tournament, the FAW will create a UEFA EURO 2020 Legacy Fund, into which the FAW will reinvest the surplus it generates from staging UEFA EURO 2020.

“This legacy fund will be used to support grass roots Welsh football and will have a positive impact on communities throughout Wales.” 

The Millennium Stadium was used by the English FA to host FA Cup games during the construction of Wembley Stadium and is considered one of the best stadiums in Europe.

Welsh International and Real Madrid star Gareth Bale, who is backing the Welsh bid, added, “This could be the beginning of a great period for Welsh international football.It would then be an unbelievable experience to play in the 2020 European Championship finals in my home city of Cardiff. 

“I have been fortunate to play in some of the world’s greatest stadia but nothing matches the atmosphere and passion generated by the Millennium Stadium. These are exciting times for Welsh football and I’m really proud to offer my full support to the FAW’s UEFA EURO 2020 bid.” 

Image: Action Images / Carl Recine

Posted by: Aaron Gourley 

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