Unconventional. Special one. Strange. Risky. Such will be the 16th final tournament of the European Football Championship, which will start tomorrow night in Rome with a Italy-Turkey meeting.
A number of 51 matches in 11 countries await Football Europe in the coming month.
Laurinec: Great idea
The attributes associated with a prestigious tournament are justified. Starting with the year that appears in the name. EURO 2020 will take place in 2021. The annual slippage was caused by a coronavirus pandemic and ensured a rarity.
The event, which was founded in 1960 and was originally intended to celebrate the 60th anniversary of its founding, will not take place for the first time in a traditional four-year cycle. Just five years have passed since the previous Euro, hosted by France.
Brave football plans were affected by a coronavirus pandemic. A year ago, the European Football Union (UEFA) had to postpone the event.
“I remember the great euphoria that occurred in Kiev before the finals of the 2012 European Championships, when we voted for a new format of the championship at that time with thirteen cities. The current pandemic period has quite complicated the implementation of this great idea in full.
Nevertheless, I still think that we will be able to organize the European Championships, which will be a symbol of unification, something new that European football needs, “says František Laurinec, who was one of the co-creators of the idea of the championship in several countries.
At the time, he was a member of the UEFA Executive Committee and was the right-hand man of the legendary French footballer Michel Platini, who headed the union.
They want a full arena in Budapest
Stadiums, which have almost always cracked at the seams, will in many cases be filled only modestly. Mass cross-cross travel across the continent is still complicated. Strict coronavirus safety and health measures do not allow fans to create a real football atmosphere everywhere.Read more They played against the imitation of the Škriniarovs. Slovaks can faint with their hands, the Poles criticize
However, UEFA has strictly adhered to letting at least part of the spectators into view. A country or city that could not guarantee this requirement lost its right to organize matches at the last minute.
This measure affected the Slovak representatives, who had to change their plans at the last minute and head to other venues. Already completely secured stays in Dublin and Bilbao were exchanged for St. Petersburg and Seville.
Organizers will vacate at least 25 percent of seats for spectators in stadiums, which was a basic condition. But somewhere they have generous ideas.
In Budapest, they promised that in the Puskás Arena they could fill the entire capacity for F-group matches and round-finals, which is more than 67,000 people. Or in St. Petersburg, the Krestovsky stadium, where the Slovaks will present themselves on Monday in a match with Poland, can use 50 percent of the almost 65,000 capacity. Everywhere, however, viewers must prepare for tighter measures and restrictions.
UEFA respects country regulations
Although Laurinec believes that the tournament will take place in full, he is still a little worried. “The organization is extremely demanding in these conditions and the officials who provide it at UEFA or in individual cities deserve recognition. It’s a pity we don’t live to see the full stadiums, the fanzones in the cities, this great atmosphere that has always prevailed in them. “
According to him, problems can arise in connection with epidemiological measures. “Each country has its own regulations and they are, of course, superior to the UEFA regulations. They have to respect them. Last year, Slovan Bratislava paid for it in the Champions League in the Faroe Islands.Read more Diary from St. Petersburg: Hope for return. To normal
The second problem may also be the fact that the situation changes frequently, sometimes from day to day, “the former head of the SFZ suggests possible risks. However, Laurinec also believes that the most important thing is that the championship takes place.
“The fact that the tournament will take place on an almost original scale and with the participation of some spectators is, after a year and a half that Europe has experienced, a sign of a certain optimism and a signal that slowly but surely, with great difficulty, step by step, we win with a pandemic. I believe that it will be a quality championship. “
Sovereign Italians and Belgians
The coronavirus will undoubtedly affect the event. Several teams have already informed about cases of the disease at COVID-19, they also affected Slovak opponents, especially Spaniards and Swedes.
The Italians and Turks, who will play the first match of the tournament at the Olympic Stadium in Rome, did not report coronavirus losses. The home team are the favorites not only of this duel, but also of the A-group. They advanced to the championship in an impressive way, only they and the Belgians did not lose a single point in qualifying, they won in all ten matches.
They now want to make up for the huge disappointment of the recent past – the Italians did not advance to the last World Cup, which took place in Russia three years ago.
However, former Italian coach Antonio Conte draws attention to the strength of Turkey. “He has a quality team, the players are well prepared physically and technically, they have made significant progress recently.”
The Turks advanced from the H-group, when they lacked only two points for the first France and lost only once in the entire qualification. The match should be watched by about 16,000 spectators, which is a quarter of the capacity of the Roman stand.Read more Put it away! UEFA instructed the Ukrainians to adjust their jerseys
Source: Pravda.sk – Šport – Futbal – Hokej by futbal.pravda.sk.
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