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UEFA plans coronavirus pandemic talks after stating 'no reason' to postpone Euro 2020

5:03 PM GMT+4 12/03/2020
UEFA Aleksander Ceferin Coronavirus
European football’s governing body had said it would not be making any changes to the scheduled format, which could change on Tuesday

UEFA has announced that members of all 55 associations across Europe have been invited to attend a meeting – via video conference – on Tuesday, March 17 to discuss the ongoing developments in the spread of coronavirus.

The news comes shortly after a spokesman for the governing body told Goal on Thursday that it saw “no reason” to postpone or alter the current scheduling of Euro 2020 despite the ever-increasing concerns regarding coronavirus.

As things stand, a tournament due to be staged at various locations across the continent is due to get underway on June 12.

However, governments and sporting authorities around the world are having to take drastic action in a bid to contain the spread of the disease.

Serie A and La Liga are among the leading divisions to have brought their domestic schedules to an immediate halt .

Games in various competitions across the globe are also having to be played out behind closed doors.

UEFA had originally stated that there was no need for it to make any decisions regarding its flagship international occasion, telling Goal: “There is no reason to change anything in the time schedule. 

“UEFA is in contact with the relevant international and local authorities regarding the coronavirus and its development.”

The tune has changed, however, with the European Club Association, FIFPro and the board of European Leagues now invited to join the other members in an online conference.

UEFA wrote on Thursday: “In the light of the ongoing developments in the spread of Covid-19 across Europe and the changing analysis of the World Health Organisation, UEFA has today invited representatives of its 55 member associations, together with the boards of the European Club Association and the European Leagues and a representative of FIFPro, to attend meetings by video conference on Tuesday 17 March to discuss European football’s response to the outbreak.

“Discussions will include all domestic and European competitions, including UEFA Euro 2020.

“Further communication will be made following those meetings.”

UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin has already stated that no calls regarding this summer’s European Championship will be rushed into .

He has said: “We are dealing with it and we are confident we can deal with it.

“You don’t know how many big concerns we have: we have security concerns, political instability and one is also the virus. Let’s try to be optimistic, not think about dark scenarios – there’s time for that later.”

UEFA’s general secretary Theodore Theodoridis added at the association’s annual congress: “We do not want to speculate what will happen in three or four months' time.

“We are addressing the situation already by making contact with the World Health Organisation [WHO] and different governments as well.

“We have acknowledged the situation but we do not want to over-react. We have created a line of contact.”

Euro 2020 is intended to see 24 nations chasing down the ultimate prize, with Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal the current holders of a continental crown.