On Thursday 27 September, UEFA’s executive committee announced that Germany will stage the 2024 European Championship. After this summer’s disastrous World Cup coupled with the controversy of Mesut Özil’s decision to call time on his international career, the news will come as a welcome boost to the DFB.
The bidding process was a straight two-way battle between Germany and Turkey, who missed out again after previous failed attempts to host the tournament in 2008, 2012 and 2016. Concerns over the Turkish bid centred around the country’s human rights’ record as well as the need for upgrades to their transport infrastructure. Germany, who hosted a hugely successful World Cup in 2006, represents the “safer” and best option.
It will be the first time Germany will have hosted the tournament as a unified country, after West Germany staged the tournament back in 1988. The 2024 championship will also see a welcome return to a single host with Euro 2020 set to be staged across a number of countries. Before announcing the winner, UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin said Germany and Turkey had made “very strong bids.”
After announcing the winner, he added: “The procedure was transparent. The voting was democratic. Every democratic decision is the right decision so I can only say I am looking forward to seeing a fantastic Euro in 2024.”
Berlin will stage the final, as they did in the 2006 World Cup, while matches will also take place in the cities of Cologne, Dortmund, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Gelsenkirchen, Hamburg, Leipzig, Munich and Stuttgart. It was also confirmed as part of the bidding process that the fan parks, for those who cannot obtain a ticket, will be open once again.
Former Germany captain Philipp Lahm, an ambassador for his country’s bid, said: “We have amazing stadiums, fans who love football, first and foremost we have people who love celebrating with other Europeans. We will organise a huge football party in Germany.”.
If Germany can organise another tournament on par with the 2006 World Cup, then it is sure to be a memorable and successful event.
By Jonathan Shelley.