On Tuesday afternoon, UEFA announced all the details about the 2028 European Championship.
Germany will host the next Euros, in 2024, and that competition will start in just 976 days.
Below are all the details that are known so far about Euro 2028.
What will the format be?
As has been the case since 2016, the European Championship Finals will feature 24 teams divided into six groups of four.
The qualifying format is still unknown, but it is likely to be similar to Euro 2020.
This means that group winners and runners-up are automatically qualified with play-off spots awarded based on the teams’ performances in the Nations League.
How many places do you need to host?
Ten stadiums will host matches at Euro 2028 and must have the following minimum capacities:
- 3 stadiums with capacity for more than 30,000
- 4 stadiums with capacity for more than 40,000
- 1 stadium (preferably 2) with capacity for 50,000+
- 1 stadium with capacity for more than 60,000, to host the final and the opening match.
What are the key dates for potential hosts?
March 23, 2022 – Deadline for National Associations to formally confirm their interest in hosting.
March 30, 2022 – Hosting requirements for potential hosts confirmed.
April 5, 2022: Announcement of the list of selected candidates.
April 12, 2023: deadline for the submission of the file of possible hosts.
September 2023: Hots announced by UEFA
Who has expressed interest in bidding?
Turkey has applied to host the last five euros (2008, 2012, 2016, 2020 and 2024) without being successful.
The city of Istanbul has also bet on hosting the 2000, 2008 and 2020 Olympics without coming close to winning.
There are currently 16 stadiums in Turkey with that significant capacity of 30,000+.
However, very few meet UEFA standards and the four largest that do are based in the country’s capital.
The Atatürk Olimpiyat Stadı is the largest at 75,000 and has / will host the 2005 and 2023 Champions League Finals.
Romania, Greece, Bulgaria and Serbia
Its provisional bid for the World Cup would see four host venues in each of the four nations, as 16 are needed for the expanded World Cup.
However, it remains to be seen which cities and stadiums will be formally unveiled if they make an official offer for the euros.
Only seven stadiums in the four nations have a capacity of more than 30,000 people and are a UEFA category four venue, the highest rating that can be received.
What is also unknown is whether the financial problems caused by the Covid-19 pandemic will derail any potential offerings.
Sweden, Denmark, Finland and Norway
This would cause the tournament to be divided into Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden.
However, only four stadiums in these four countries are UEFA category four and have a capacity of more than 30,000.
These are located in Copenhagen, Helsinki, with two in Stockholm, the largest of which is the Friends Arena in Sweden with 50,000 spectators.
Another hurdle is the fact that UEFA will only allow a maximum of two hosts to qualify automatically.
This could be another possible sticking point for an offering like this in multiple countries.
Italy hosted the European Championship in 1968 and 1980, as well as the World Cups in 1934 and, more recently, in 1990.
In October 2021, it hosted the UEFA Nations League final with matches played at the Allianz and San Siro stadiums.
Surprisingly, those are two of only three venues in the country with more than 30,000 seats and a UEFA category four ranking.
The other is the Stadio Olimpico in Rome, which partially hosted Euro 2020, including the opening match.
This is because many of the stadiums were built for Italy ’90, so they are now old and would need to be renovated if they were to host a future tournament.
Spain and Portugal
Currently, they are Europe’s leading candidates to host the 2030 World Cup, but face stiff competition from other continents.
Nine stadiums in Spain have the requirements to host matches in the final of the European Championship.
Meanwhile, Estádio da Luz and Estádio José Alvalade in Lisbon and Estádio do Dragão in Porto would also be excellent, already at the height of the venues.
Don’t be one bit surprised if Euro 2028 or World Cup 2030 wins this offer.
If this were to be successful, given that 16 venues would be needed, it would be played in England, Scotland, Wales, and potentially all of Ireland.
However, for a European Championship requiring only ten stadiums, England could bid alone.
For World Cup bids, UEFA does not want two European bids to reach the final round to avoid the possibility of the vote being split.
As it stands, Portugal / Spain looks more likely to go this far in the World Cup bidding.
Then the FA could turn its attention to Euro 2028.
With numerous large and iconic stadiums, very little renovation would be needed.
Soccer could come home in 2028, as it did in 1996, but there is still a long way to go.