Why Newcastle could host Euro 2021 matches after Tottenham bid rejected

Sam Preston April 23, 2021
Photo by Simon Stacpoole/Offside/Offside via Getty Images

Wembley is to be handed an extra Euro 2021 match, according to the Daily Telegraph, but another stadium in England could join the summer party too.

The Telegraph reports Dublin is set to lose the games it was due to host because Ireland couldn’t guarantee fans would be able to attend the Aviva Stadium come June.

And it appears the uncertainty caused by covid also has ramifications for Tottenham Hotspur and Newcastle United.

The Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and St James’ Park have been mentioned as potential host venues – but only one remains in the race.

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Euro 2021 and revenge on Tottenham

The report claims Tottenham informed UEFA they would be willing to host any reallocated Euro 2021 matches.

Bilbao is also no longer a host city but their matches have been passed over to Seville. That ensures Spain retain home advantage.

Wembley looks set to get just the one extra match, and that could benefit Gareth Southgate’s England too.

England’s three group-stage matches are already at Wembley, while it will also host the competition’s semi-finals and final.

And if the Three Lions win their group, they’ll play their last-16 match at home too.

In that scenario, their opponents would be from Group F, the group of death containing Germany, France, Portugal and Hungary.

The group games previously allocated to Dublin are up for grabs but look set to be handed to Russia, with St Petersburg a contender.

That’s because the Super League fiasco has burned Tottenham’s bridges with UEFA.

They are apparently reluctant to hand anything to any of the clubs who threatened the fabric of European football in the past week.

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Unexpected consequences for Spurs

Spurs tried to move to the next level with their space-age stadium, which opened in April 2019.

 

The club banked on extra revenue from hosting events there, including NFL matches.

After more than a year without fans, an injection of cash from hosting a European Championship match would have been a welcome boost.

But, because of their part in the gluttonous and ill-conceived Super League, Tottenham will now be overlooked.

It’s a big summer ahead for Daniel Levy in any case. He has to find a new manager and deal with uncertainty over Harry Kane’s future.

He also has to oversee the revamp of a squad that is leaky at the back and built at cross purposes between Mauricio Pochettino and Jose Mourinho.

And Levy must do all this amid the backdrop of a fans’ revolt – potentially with no cash coming in from European football due to one reason or another.

Hosting a Euros game wouldn’t have cleared all that up – but it would have been welcome news after a tumultuous week.

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Newcastle on alert

It’s not a done deal that all those Group E games will head to Russia. St James’ Park is reportedly under consideration to host at least one of them.

After another dour season under Steve Bruce, it would be a welcome reminder to fans in the north east that football can be fun.

The FA are apparently planning for 25 per cent capacity at Wembley during the group stage, and it’s fair to assume it would be the same scenario at Newcastle.

St James’ Park hosted three Group B matches during Euro 96 – featuring France, Romania and Bulgaria.

Football fans in (most of) the north east will be hoping for a bit of summer football on their back door.

Sam Preston is an NCTJ gold standard news and sports journalist who studied with the Press Association. He also has a 2:1 law with French law degree from the University of Birmingham, which included a year studying at Bordeaux Montaigne University. He is an FA Level 1 football coach who appeared on the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire show in 2018 and has also written digital football content and match-day programme pieces for Colchester United, Mansfield Town and Stockport County.