Despite Euro 2028 being a little under five years away, we already know who will be hosting the event.
On October 10, 2023, UEFA confirmed the UK and the Republic of Ireland as joint hosts for the finals, which will likely begin in June 2028.
Following two years of feasibility studies and bid research, just two bids made the final cut-off date of April 12, 2023.
The UK and Ireland application included a 10-stadium list featuring Wembley, Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium, and St. James’ Park.
Turkey was the only rival bid to the UK/Ireland project after Italy opted to focus on a Euro 2032 proposal and Spain and Portugal switched attention to the 2030 World Cup.
But ahead of the UEFA executive committee making a final decision on October 10, Turkey announced its withdrawal in order to put together a joint ticket with Italy for Euro 2032.
That meant the remaining bid from the UK and Ireland was unopposed and simply needed final ratification.
Where is Euro 2028 being held?
The Euro 2028 finals will be co-hosted by the UK and the Republic of Ireland.
Turkey’s withdrawal from the bidding process effectively made the decision a formality. They are now part of a World Cup bid alongside Italy for 2032.
The successful proposal features six venues in England and one each in Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.
Wembley Stadium in London held the semifinals and final of Euro 2020, which was spread throughout the continent, but this will be the first full senior men’s tournament staged on UK or Irish shores for more than 30 years.
Euro ’96 — An iconic moment for English football
Among the nations originally involved in the bidding process for Euro 2028, England is the only country to have previously hosted the competition, as part of the memorable Euro ’96 tournament.
England bounced back from their failure to reach the 1994 World Cup with a run to the semifinals on home soil before losing out to old foes Germany in a penalty shootout.
Despite the heartbreak of a spot-kick defeat — with current head coach Gareth Southgate missing the key penalty — the tournament revived support for England, as the famous ‘Football’s Coming Home’ anthem was born.
Absolute heartbreak for England ????
Andreas Moller dispatches his penalty to send Germany through to the final of Euro 96. A defining moment for an inconsolable Gareth Southgate but he’ll bounce back that’s for sure ????????????????????????????????#Euro96Relived pic.twitter.com/fLUUpYGpMn
— ITV Football (@itvfootball) May 28, 2020
How many teams will play at Euro 2028?
UEFA has confirmed its intention to continue with a 24-team tournament at Euro 2028 after initially updating the tournament size from 16 nations ahead of Euro 2016.
Because the tournament will be held across five different competing UEFA nations, the tradition of the hosts automatically qualifying for the final tournament has been somewhat complicated.
Will anyone qualify automatically for Euro 2028?
There are no firm plans in place yet with regards to how the automatic qualification spots will be handed out — or if there will be any given to the host nations at all.
According to reports, including in The Athletic, UEFA’s idea is to award just two automatic places the finals, even though there are five host nations. The plan is for all five teams to compete as normal in the qualifying groups, with the two automatic spots kept in reserve as a back-up option should any of the host nations fail to qualify through the usual means. If more than two of them do not qualify, then the automatic places will be awarded to the two teams with the best qualifying records.
In other words, it’s possible that all five host nations — England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, and the Republic of Ireland — will qualify for the Euro 2028 finals. It’s also possible that only two will be there.
When is Euro 2028?
UEFA is yet to confirm the details of when Euro 2028 will be held, but the expectation is that it will take place from June 2028 to July 2028.
List of European Championship hosts
The first European Championship was held in 1960 as part of UEFA’s plan to combine regional European mini-tournaments into a larger competition.
Germany/West Germany and Spain are the most successful nations in the tournament’s history, with three wins each, and La Roja are the only team to defend a European title as part of their all-conquering 2008-2012 run.
|Year||Host||Champions||No. of teams|
|2028||UK/Rep. of Ireland||TBC||24|