Source: DPA/PA Images
UEFA ANNOUNCED TODAY that Dublin has been paired with Bilbao for Euro 2020.
For the first time, the European championships will be held across the continent to celebrate its 60th anniversary, with 13 host cities originally chosen.
At a Uefa executive committee meeting this afternoon, however, it was confirmed that Brussels has been stripped of its four matches due to doubts over whether a new stadium will be ready for the tournament.
Those games have been handed to London, meaning a total of seven matches will now be played at Wembley — including the semi-finals and final.
The Principality Stadium in Cardiff and Stockholm’s Friends Arena had been touted as possible replacements for Brussels.
This afternoon, a random draw was made to pair the 12 host cities and the results are as follows:
Group A: Rome and Baku
Group B: Amsterdam and Bucharest
Group C: Saint Petersburg and Copenhagen
Group D: London and Glasgow
Group E: Bilbao and Dublin
Group F: Munich and Budapest
If Ireland qualify for the finals, they will be guaranteed two home group matches at the Aviva Stadium. The other would be played at Athletic Bilbao’s San Mamés, which also means that the Boys in Green would face European heavyweights Spain as group opponents.
Similarly, England and Scotland will be grouped together as long as their qualifications campaigns are successful as London and Glasgow have been paired.
The full schedule is still to be confirmed, but Rome’s Stadio Olimpico in Rome will stage the opening game.
Having missed out on the World Cup finals after defeat to Denmark, Martin O’Neill’s won’t play a competitive match until the Uefa Nations League begins next September.
And it was revealed today that Ireland will be placed in Pot 2 of League B for the newly-founded competition’s draw, which takes place on 24 January.
Teams will be split into four groups of three, and play each other home and away between September and November. The group winners earn promotion and a play-off place for Euro 2020.
The actual qualification campaign is scheduled to begin in March 2019.
League B pots:
Pot 1: Austria, Wales, Russia, Slovakia
Pot 2: Sweden, Ukraine, Republic of Ireland, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Pot 3: Northern Ireland, Denmark, Czech Republic, Turkey
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