Turkey Passed Over as France Awarded UEFA Euro 2016National Team • Author: Nathan Redd • Friday, May 28, 2010
In an announcement just moments ago, UEFA, the governing body of European football, awarded the Euro 2016 championship to France. The country was one of three finalists, along with Turkey and Italy. Both France and Italy have hosted the tournament twice previously. Turkey was bidding for the third time, but has never been awarded the prestigious competition. France narrowly defeated Turkey in the final voting, with a 7-to-6 vote tally.
Turkey were denied the opportunity to host the European football championship for a third time, after previous bids in 2008 (joint bid with Greece) and 2012. UEFA President Michel Platini made the announcement just moments ago in an official ceremony at the Espace Hippomène in Geneva, Switzerland.
"I want first to thank our friends from Italy and Turkey; I feel for them and the feelings of frustration and sadness after months of work and I wish Italian and Turkish football good luck," said French Football Federation (FFF) president Jean-Pierre Escalettes. "For us it is a moment of intense emotions, given that in 2016 we will welcome European football to France. We will fulfill our promises and we thank our friends on the Executive Committee at UEFA. They have put their trust in us and that's what counts for us. This is a beautiful day for us," Escalettes stated.
France has hosted the tournament twice previously, in 1960 and 1984. They are the first country to host the event three times. The 2016 competition will be the first to feature 24 teams, up from 16 in 2012.
The French government has pledged to help guarantee the projected 1.7 billion Euro cost of building and renovating stadiums. The French bid included 12 stadiums, of which seven would require major renovations and four would be new, in 11 cities: Bordeaux, Lens, Lille, Lyon, Nancy, Nice, Marseille, Paris (Stade de France and Parc des Princes), Saint-Etienne, Strasbourg and Toulouse.
The final vote tally saw France earn seven votes, just one more than runners-up Turkey. The UEFA Executive Committee voted on France and Turkey after Italy was eliminated, receiving 23 points to 43 for France and 38 for Turkey.