The vote is in:
Uefa confirms Euro 2020 to be staged in various cities across Europe …
— Guardian sport (@guardian_sport) December 6, 2012
Immediate condemnation was evident in all the “It’s all about the money, man” Tweets (and jokes about non-European cities hosting Euro matches) which followed and continue to do so. Which I get. It’s pretty expensive to travel, so having to follow your national team through several European nations to watch the football, even in the age of Ryan Air and irresponsibly cheap air flights, is a major hit to recession-affected fans.
Yet it seems to me to be not that drastically different than upping sticks to fly from Ukraine to Poland, or even from Warsaw to Gdańsk.
There are also several ways UEFA would obviously mitigate this. First, by limiting group stage play to single nations, allowing fans to watch the opening matches without having to leave the country.
Second, by ensuring some relatively geographic uniformity among the host nations. A semifinal in Paris followed by a final in Kiev would be really stupid. Perhaps even stupid enough for UEFA, but come on.
Far, far worse and more damaging was UEFA’s decision to expand the tournament to 24 teams in 2016. If the competition sucks from here on out (which it will), that will be the reason, not having to go from Holland to Germany to watch England lose.