Eurocrat demands Euro 2020 semis and final be taken away from Wembley

A top Eurocrat has demanded that European football governing body UEFA move the two European Championship semi-finals and final away from Wembley to another stadium inside the European Union. 

Margaritas Schinas, the EU’s commissioner for “protecting the European way of life” expressed his gobsmacking objective to MEPs.

“I want to share my doubts about the possibility of organising the final and semi-finals at Wembley, in a packed stadium, at a time that the United Kingdom itself is limiting its citizens’ travel to the European Union,” said Schinas in the European Parliament of the fixtures to take place on 6, 7 and 11 July in front of capacity crowds. 

“I think UEFA needs to carefully analyse this decision… a decision that needs to be taken with full knowledge of the facts,” Schinas added, alluding to the risk of Covid infection.

Yesterday saw favourites France get knocked out by non-EU Switzerland in front of 25,000 fans in Bucharest. Like much of the EU, Romania has a higher Covid death rate, but a lower infection rate than the UK, where the Indian variant of the virus has become prevalent.

However, the EU remains well behind Britain for vaccinations. 58% compared to 84% of adults have been jabbed. UK delivery of second doses outstrip the EU by a ratio of 2-to-1. The “Delta” Indian variant could potentially be both more deadly and infectious. Its emergence caused panic following an appalling second wave in India leading the authorities there to upgrade it from “variant of interest” to “variant of concern”.

But UK virologists are cautious about declaring Delta any more dangerous than other variants. “There is no data yet to support the variant of concern claim,” said virologist, Dr Gagandeep Kang of the Royal Society of London.

Analysis published by the government found that two doses of the Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines used in the UK were between 92% and 96% effective against the Delta variant.

This probably explains why the European Commission has distanced itself from Schinas’s outburst. “What is very important to take into account is that we are in a situation where we have a virus and there are these variants out there,” said a spokesperson.

“We have to be extremely careful with this variant, with the transmission of this variant and it’s very important in this context that we bear in mind the different guidance that is out there with regard to the organisation of events, putting people together.”