UEFA medical chief says there is ‘no way’ Euros won’t be played

February 25 – The delayed Euro 2020 will definitely go ahead in June and fans could yet be allowed to attend according to UEFA’s top medical  official.

The tournament was postponed last year due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and rescheduled for June 11 – July 11 this year.

“There is no way the Euros will not happen, they will happen,” Dr Daniel Koch, UEFA’s medical advisor on Euro 2020, told Reuters. “There is no worst-case scenario, there are realistic scenarios and best-case scenarios.”

What hasn’t been confirmed, however, is whether the tournament will remain a 13-city, pan-European affair. Koch said UEFA will make a decision on that in early April after consulting with the 12 host countries.

But hopefully  limited numbers of fans could attend pending the findings of four potential scenarios – full stadiums, 50-100% capacity or 20-30% capacity and games behind closed doors.

“I think there will be a lot of flexibility at least up until the end of April, a decision must be made at the beginning of April but then there is a lot of flexibility to say, now we can scale-up because the situation improved much more than expected,” Koch said.

Asked about likely stadium capacities, he added: “I think it is much more than we imagine. In the autumn some countries were at 30% (in grounds), I think it is possible more than 30%,” he said.

“It is very, very difficult to forecast. It is not only forecasting the epidemic, it is forecasting the politics. We work hard on an optimistic good way, but how much will be possible? We don’t know yet.”

“It is too early to say. We will see what the situation is and what is the requirement from the different countries but I hope that at least some travelling will be possible because it is not travelling, in the end, that makes the real difference.”

“For sure, every country has tried to protect itself but travel restrictions are not the main issue. The main issue is to keep this (virus) bound by detecting the case, finding the connections and have social distancing. But we are confident.”

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