UEFA, European football’s governing body, will today postpone this summer’s Euro 2020 Championships as the flagship tournament becomes the latest casualty of the corona virus outbreak that has upended the global sporting calendar.
The tournament will be delayed in an effort to allow the continent’s domestic leagues to finish their seasons and avoid multibillion-euro hits to their businesses, said multiple people familiar with the matter.
Almost every football division in Europe has suspended matches or started playing matches in empty stadiums in response to the pandemic.
Consultancy KPMG predicted the “Big Five” football leagues in England, Spain, Germany, France and Italy face a hit of almost €4bn from lost match day, broadcasting and sponsorship revenues if the remaining games in their seasons are not completed.
The hope would be that by postponing the tournament, which is set to start in June and be hosted by 12 European cities, national leagues will be able to resume games later this summer after the peak of the outbreak has passed, the people said.