Fifa Council member Michel D’Hooghe has expressed his “severe doubts” over Brussels’ capacity to stage games during the Uefa Euro 2020 national team football tournament amid delays over the construction of a new stadium in the Belgian city.
Euro 2020 is due to take place across 13 different countries as part of an innovative new hosting model introduced by Uefa, the governing body for European football.
Brussels was selected as one of the host cities and a new 60,000-seat venue, known as the Eurostadium, is due to be built in Grimbergen, just north of the city.
Local authorities have yet to reach an agreement on construction plans for the stadium, which had been due to serve as the home of Anderlecht before the Brussels-based Pro League club earlier this year opted to withdraw its plans to use the ground.
With little over three years to go until the start of Euro 2020, D’Hooghe said a solution has to be reached sooner rather than later.
“If they want to build it they have to start building very soon, and there I have severe doubts,” D’Hooghe said, according to the Associated Press news agency. “Even if Anderlecht would say ‘We go there,’ there remains the political problem.”
D’Hooghe said Uefa is hopeful of a solution being reached, but said it would “not be a big problem” for the body to seek a replacement city.