The next Women’s European Championship has officially been postponed until July 2022, UEFA announced on Thursday. The tournament will now take place from July 6-31, 2022, and venues will remain the same, with England serving as host country.
The Women’s European Championship — or EURO, as it is more commonly known — takes place every four years and was set to begin in July 2021. However, the postponement of the 2020 Olympic Games to summer 2021, as well as the postponement of the Men’s EURO to the same time frame, meant that the women’s continental event also needed to be pushed back a year. Each was delayed due to ongoing health concerns around the COVID-19 pandemic, which has shut down the sports world since early March and left leagues and event organizers worldwide scrambling to complete or postpone competitions.
Among many complications on the calendar for 2021, Netherlands, Sweden and Great Britain (a team expected to be composed of almost entirely English players) will be competing in the Olympic women’s soccer tournament, which overlapped the originally scheduled EURO dates.
UEFA president Aleksander Čeferin said in a statement on Thursday that the confederation “considered all options” and the move to 2022 is about “ensuring that our flagship women’s competition will be the only major football tournament of the summer, providing it with the spotlight it deserves.” The Men’s World Cup will take place in Qatar in November and December of 2022, a controversial shift from the traditional summer window due to the extreme heat in the host country. That provides the Women’s EURO a bigger platform that summer.
“This decision puts us in a position to deliver a tournament that attracts global attention, maximizes media coverage and increases stadium attendances, and is therefore helping us to meet our core objective of inspiring the next generation of footballers,” said UEFA’s chief of women’s football and former Germany international Nadine Kessler.
“2022 also allows for further promotion and partner activation, which would have been much more difficult in what is now a crowded summer in 2021. It is a clear sign of commitment to our dedicated partners who have joined us since we decided to separate the sponsorship of women’s football from men’s football.”
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