Lausanne (AFP) – Russia is among the candidates to host the European Championship in either 2028 or 2032 despite being banned from international sport following the invasion of Ukraine, UEFA announced after Wednesday’s deadline to declare an interest passed.
Russia and Turkey will go up against a joint bid by the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland for Euro 2028.
Russia and Turkey also declared their interest in hosting the 2032 edition, along with Italy.
UEFA will announce the host nations for both tournaments in September 2023.
Russia hosted the 2018 World Cup while Saint Petersburg was one of the venues for last year’s delayed Europe-wide Euro 2020.
Saint Petersburg was also supposed to host this season’s UEFA Champions League final in May but was stripped of the game when Russia invaded Ukraine.
Russia was kicked out of qualifying for this year’s World Cup after UEFA and world football’s governing body FIFA decided to expel the country from all international competitions “until further notice”.
The Court of Arbitration for Sport last week upheld that ban, which also affects Russian clubs and the women’s team, who have been kicked out of July’s European Championship in England.
A spokesperson for European football’s governing body pointed out that the Russian Football Union (RFU) has not itself been excluded.
Nevertheless, the same source said UEFA would “re-evaluate the legal and factual situation” at meetings planned in April and May, “including in the wake of the declaration of interest expressed by the RFU”.
Turkey is hoping for success this time after losing out to Germany in the bidding to host Euro 2024.
They will rival the UK and Ireland, who have decided to focus on a joint bid to host the Euro in 2028 instead of going for the 2030 World Cup.
Italy, the reigning European champions, have hosted the Euro twice before, in 1968 and 1980.
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