foxsports: UEFA chiefs spent just “two minutes” discussing coronavirus and the potential threat to European club football and Euro 2020.
The spread of the killer virus is the world’s most pressing issue with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson heading an emergency Cobra meeting in Downing Street to discuss the UK’s response.
Switzerland has banned gatherings of more than 1,000 people, France has stopped all indoor meetings of more than 5,000 people and a host of sporting events have already been postponed including five matches in Italy’s Serie A.
But the issue was just a footnote at today’s meeting of Uefa’s ruling executive council in Amsterdam.
One insider revealed the discussion, instigated by president Aleksander Ceferin, had lasted just “two minutes” with the Slovenian boss of European football urging calm.
UEFA has big decisions to make with the last 16 stages of both the Champions League and Europa League being held next week and the Euro 2020 play-offs, involving Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Republic scheduled for the final week of the month.
But European bosses are determined not to be rushed into any premature decisions and the fate of Euro 2020 is not being discussed at this stage.
The remainder of the meeting, which lasted around two hours, was taken up by issues such as hosting decisions for future tournaments and competitions.
A UEFA spokesman said: “There wasn’t much discussion about it because there is not much we can do about it.
“We’re in touch with the authorities, we’re in the hands of the local authorities, and we’ll deal with whatever they tell us.
“The position is that nothing has changed since last week.
“At this stage, other than the matches that have already been changed, there is no threat to any upcoming matches.
“But we will react to what the local authorities say, or what the WHO (World Health Organisation) and other people say.”
Asked about the prospect of playing all of next week’s club games – including Liverpool’s Champions League second leg against Atletico Madrid – behind closed doors, the spokesman added: “It’s not fair to start speculating on things like that.
“The authorities on the ground are in charge of the situation. UEFA is a sports governing body.
“Last week the Italian authorities that decided that no public events could happen and then that the Inter game could be played behind closed doors.
“It’s in the hands of those people who are experts in the situation.”
Alexey Sorokin, Russia’s representative on the executive committee, added: “Right now, the situation with the Euros is stable.
“There is no sense of panic, none whatsoever. There are no changes to the tournament.”
Source: Published by foxsports