By Fatih Erel
ISTANBUL (AA) – UEFA officials will decide on whether Turkey or Germany will host 2024 UEFA European Football Championship (EURO 2024) on Thursday.
The UEFA Executive Committee will meet in Nyon, Switzerland, on Sept. 27 to choose the EURO 2024 host.
A total of 18 UEFA officials — including the president, 5 UEFA vice presidents and 12 executive committee members — are eligible to participate in the voting.
UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin, vice-presidents Swedish Karl-Erik Nilsson, Portuguese Fernando Gomes, Ukrainian Grigoriy Surkis, Italian Michele Uva and British David Gill will vote in the election.
The executive members, who are eligible to vote, include Polish Zbigniew Boniek, Hungarian Sandor Csanyi, Irish John Delaney, Swedish Peter Gillieron, French Florence Hardouin, Bulgarian Borislav Mihaylov, Spanish Juan Luis Larrea Sarobe, Croatian Davor Suker, Dutch Michael van Praag, Italian Andrea Agnelli and British Ivan Gazidis.
Swedish Lars-Christer Olsson, a member of the executive committee, is unlikely to participate in the election due to health issues.
Turkey’s Servet Yardimci, who is a member of the executive committee, and Germany’s Reinhard Grindel, who is a vice president of the UEFA, are not eligible to vote.
– 'No to Racism'
“No to Racism” — a campaign launched by UEFA to eliminate racism, discrimination and intolerance from football — may shatter the hopes for Germany's EURO 2024 hosting bid.
"The campaign to eliminate racism, discrimination and intolerance from football has become a major priority for UEFA in recent years – and the European body makes full use of its high-profile platforms to send out a key and unequivocal message: No to Racism," according to UEFA.
On Friday, the UEFA issued an evaluation of Turkey And Germany's Euro 2024 bids.
The report included feedback on the state of stadiums, as well as the political, social and environmental aspects, along with issues related to security, mobility, accommodation, and training facilities.
According to the UEFA evaluation report, four out of 10 candidate host cities in Germany are not members of the European Coalition of Cities against Racism.
In the recent years, Germany has been rocked by racism and bribery-related allegations and faced widespread protests.
In 2015, German weekly Der Spiegel claimed that Germany paid €6.7 million (around $7.8 million) in bribes to secure the 2006 World Cup. Wolfgang Niersbach, the then head of German Football Association (DFB), was forced to resign over bribery allegations, and FIFA banned him from football for a year.
Reinhard Grindel, the current head of DFB, has been tarnished by racism allegations.
In July, Turkish-German footballer Mesut Ozil quit the national team, citing racial discrimination. Ozil also said that Grindel failed to support him when he received hate mails, threatening phone calls, and racist comments on social media.
The DFB head later admitted that he had not been supportive enough.
– Turkey's stadiums meet criteria
All the proposed stadiums in Turkey are ready ahead of UEFA decision.
According to the evaluation report, all the proposed stadiums meet the minimal requirement regarding the net seating capacities.
Turkey is hoping to host the championship for the first time after bidding for four consecutive tournaments.
Turkey's EURO 2024 pitch features 10 stadiums in nine cities that include Ataturk Olympic Stadium and Ali Sami Yen Sports Complex Turk Telekom Stadium in Istanbul, Metropolitan Municipality Stadium in Bursa, Antalya Stadium in Antalya, Eskisehir New Stadium in Eskisehir, Gaziantep Stadium in Gaziantep, Metropolitan Municipality Stadium in Konya, Senol Gunes Sports Complex in Trabzon, New Stadium in Kocaeli and Ankara Stadium.