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Other SportsThe five grounds to miss out on Euro 2028

The five grounds to miss out on Euro 2028

The UK and the Republic of Ireland were today confirmed as tournament hosts for Euro 2028.

Ten grounds will stage matches, Wembley, Etihad Stadium, Villa Park, St James’ Park, Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, Bramley Moore Dock, Hampden Park, Principality Stadium, Dublin Arena and Casement Park, with some historic sporting theatres not selected.

Here are five that missed the cut:

Old Trafford

Despite its 74,300 capacity being significantly larger than the Etihad, whose will be increased to 61,000 by the time the tournament starts, Manchester United’s iconic home was overlooked in what can only be seen as a damning indictment on the reign of the Glazers.

It was on the original 14-venue long list but, following talks between United and the FA, it was not considered due to uncertainty over if and when the stadium would be redeveloped.


Anfield

Liverpool’s home is currently being expanded to bring its capacity up to 61,000 but it was never in the running, for a very simple reason: the pitch is too small. UEFA guidelines stipulate host stadiums must have a ‘field of play with standard dimensions of 105m x 68m’.

The pitch at Anfield is 101m long, ruling it out.


London Stadium

Despite having a near-identical capacity of approximately 62,500 as the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, West Ham’s London Stadium was overlooked.

Spurs’ new home ground has won rave reviews for his aesthetic appeal, as well as the atmosphere that is generated, something that cannot be said of its rival further east.


Croke Park

Another dropped from the 14-venue long list but a decision widely understood. Only London has more than one confirmed stadium, and it was never likely that Croke Park would stage games alongside the Dublin Stadium (or Aviva Stadium as it’s currently known).

Also seen as possibly too big – it has a capacity of 82,500 – if selected for unglamorous group fixtures.


Stadium of Light

Sunderland’s Stadium of Light missed out largely due to geography.

With St James’ Park, the home of bitter rivals Newcastle, just 12 miles up the road, both were never likely to be selected. Newcastle’s capacity is 52,300, marginally more than Sunderland’s 49,000, giving it the edge.

Jon Fisher
Jon Fisher
Jon has over 20 years' experience in sports journalism having worked at the Press Association, Goal and Stats Perform, covering three World Cups, an Olympics and numerous other major sporting events.
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