— Published 8 February 2022

Britain and Ireland change targets

Great Britain and Ireland are changing their strategy. After having targeted the 2030 World Cup for almost a year, an event for which their joint bid had received the support of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, they are now focusing on Euro 2028. The British and Irish announced on Monday 7 February, via a press release, that they are candidates for the continental event. “Hosting a Euro offers a similar return on investment, explained the two national federations. We believe the UK and the Republic of Ireland can offer UEFA and European football something special in 2028 – a compact and unique five-way hosting collaboration that will provide a great experience for the teams and the fans.” The message is clear: England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales and Ireland are giving up their chance at the 2030 World Cup to concentrate all their efforts on the Euro two years earlier, an event they consider more within their reach. The news comes as no surprise. For several weeks, the British and Irish had been expressing doubts about the potential of their bid, which was facing competition from European bids (Portugal and Spain, Balkans) and South American bids (Uruguay, Argentina, Chile and Paraguay). UEFA will announce the host country or countries of Euro 2028 in September 2023.