In UEFA’s teleconference meeting earlier today it was decided that Euro 202 would be postponed until the summer of 2021. Decisions regarding other UEFA club tournaments for both men and women will be made in due course. The goal for the playoff fixtures for the remaining slots in Euro 2020 is to have them played at some point this summer.
Germany National Team manager Joachim Low said he 100% agrees with the decision to have the tournament postponed. For him, there was no alternative (kicker):
We all must protect the health and life of people, that obviously also holds true for football. Therefore, it is completely right and inevitable to postpone the European Championship. Our national players would have been thrilled to play in the Euros this summer, just as they had earned the chance with their hard work. Every athlete lives for these big games, these big tournaments that thrill a country, a whole continent, or — in the case of world championships — the whole world.
DFB President Fritz Keller echoed Löw’s opinion, adding that it was UEFA’s responsibility to make this decision:
Our colleagues at UEFA, to whom we feel especially connected as the organizers of the 2024 European Championship, lived up to their responsibility today. There is no alternative to postponing the European Championship.
Oliver Bierhoff added that postponing the tournament and friendlies that Germany had scheduled against Spain and Italy this spring was the only choice that they had:
As much as we would have loved to play against Italy and Spain, and especially the 2020 European Champions this summer with our young team and three great home games in Munich, there simply is no alternative to these decisions at the moment.
Philipp Lahm also chimed in:
Postponing EURO 2020 is a correct and logical step in the given circumstances. We all love football. But in light of the pandemic, we have to set new priorities. People’s health is the greatest good. We must protect it together.
Even before UEFA’s meeting commenced earlier today, there was really no other option on the table given how quickly the COVID 19 virus has spread. Everyone’s health and safety, as well as “flattening the curve,” should be top priority at this juncture.
Munich is set to host several matches for the (now) Euro 2021 tournament, and Germany is set to host Euro 2024, so all of the protocols that UEFA has followed thus far can only help everyone be more prepared for unfortunate circumstances should they arise again.
Elsewhere, CONEMBOL’s Copa America has also been postponed, and the FIFA Club World Cup is now also in jeopardy of cancellation, since it could clash with other competitions that have been postponed. At this point, the 2020 Tokyo Olympics are still scheduled to take place, but that could very well change in due course.