The coronavirus projects a potential cloud over the Euro 2020 with 100 days to go

PARIS: This Wednesday marks 100 days until the beginning of Euro 2020 , but as the first preparations are prepared European championship to be played across the continent, the coronavirus The outbreak could represent a potentially serious threat to the tournament itself.

The decision to organize the second Euro of 24 teams in 12 different cities in 12 different countries, from Baku to Dublin and Glasgow to Rome, was undoubtedly an ambitious movement.

UEFA say all venues and transport links are ready, that demand for tickets is through the roof, and there are no obvious security worries. Except for the coronavirus outbreak, with its unknown potential consequences, which could cast a shadow over the entire event.

Most of the matches in the Italian Serie A were suspended over the weekend with the country most affected by the outbreak in Europe, with 52 deaths and more than 2,000 cases until Monday.

Meanwhile, neighboring Switzerland, with 24 confirmed cases, announced Monday the postponement of all games in its two main divisions until the end of March.

People's health is much more important than any other football game, FIFA president Gianni Infantino insisted over the weekend.

I think we all hope this can be contained, but of course we will take advice, but first it must be health, sport, the executive director of the Welsh Football Association, Jonathan Ford, told the UK Press Association. Wales will play against Italy in Rome in the Euros.

The coronavirus crisis was raised at an executive committee meeting of European football 's governing body in Amsterdam on Monday, but UEFA is remaining calm over the possible repercussions for Euro 2020 .

UEFA is in touch with the relevant international and local authorities regarding the Coronavirus and its development, it told AFP.

At the moment, there is no need to change anything in the planned schedule. The subject will remain under constant scrutiny.

The opening match will take place in Rome on Friday, June 12, with Italy facing Turkey.

UEFA says it has received more than 28 million requests for match tickets, a figure it says is more than double the number for Euro 2016.

However, if the outbreak continues, some fans may think twice before traveling to the games, even if everything is ready to receive them.

Of the 12 venues, only the Puskas Arena in Budapest has been recently built, the stadium in the Hungarian capital officially opened in November. Wembley in London will host the semifinals and the final.

In the field, the carrot of playing in the final at home is hanging over England, with the Gareth Southgate team among the tournament favorites.

They were extremely impressive in qualifying, but since then the injuries and loss of form of the key players have generated some doubts.

Harry Kane and Marcus Rashford could miss the rest of the season with their clubs due to hamstring and long-term back injuries respectively, while Raheem Sterling has not yet scored in 2020.

Southgate, who will attend the draw for the next UEFA Nations League in Amsterdam on Tuesday, also has a big call to make in goal with Everton's Jordan Pickford struggling for form.

France, one of the few leading countries that will not host the games, also has problems, and Chelsea's midfielder season, N'Golo Kante, is especially affected by the injuries.

France is in the same group as Germany, which hopes to recover from its 2018 World Cup disaster with a team that has improved considerably.

While Spain seeks to rediscover the way that allowed them to earn consecutive euros in 2008 and 2012, Portugal headlines hope to get a final 35-year-old Cristiano Ronaldo song.

Meanwhile, Belgium and a rejuvenated Netherlands, which will play group games in Amsterdam, can imagine their chances of reaching the end.

Of the 24 qualifying positions, the last four will be decided by the League of Nations play-offs later this month.

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