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Gazprom Arena set for 50% capacity at Euros, Puskás Aréna to admit vaccinated fans

The Russian organising committee for Saint Petersburg’s games at the rescheduled UEFA Euro 2020 has said approval has been granted for 50% capacity at Gazprom Arena, while Hungary has indicated that only vaccinated fans will be allowed to attend games in Budapest.

The announcements come as the 12 host cities for the football showpiece, postponed to run from June 11 to July 11 this year due to COVID-19, make their final plans for how they will stage their games during the pandemic.

Host cities have until April 7 to inform European football’s governing body of their fan attendance plans, ahead of a UEFA Executive Committee meeting scheduled for April 19. Earlier this month, UEFA suggested that any cities that cannot host fans at their stadia could have their hosting rights withdrawn.

Saint Petersburg, and the 68,000-capacity Gazprom Arena (pictured), are set to stage three Group B matches – Belgium v Russia, Finland v Russia and Finland v Belgium – along with one quarter-final.

“We look at the Euros with optimism, we already have an agreement on 50% occupancy of the stands and have all the parameters for holding the competition,” said Alexei Sorokin, director general of Saint Petersburg’s Euro 2020 organising committee, according to Russian news agency RIA Novosti.

“We are working on the admission of foreign fans, this does not cause rejection by the authorities. We are confident that the central sporting event for Russia will be held with the minimum possible restrictions and in compliance with all the necessary rules.”

Budapest’s 67,215-capacity Puskás Aréna is due to host three Group F matches, plus a Round of 16 encounter. Gergely Gulyás, a Minister of the Prime Minister’s Office, has laid out Hungary’s thinking for the Euros.

“We have indicated to UEFA that those who have been vaccinated can take part in the European Championship matches in Budapest,” said Gulyás, according to the Nemzeti Sport website.

The latest developments come after Danish Culture Minister, Joy Mogensen, yesterday (Thursday) confirmed that Copenhagen’s Parken Stadium will be able to welcome at least 11,000 fans for matches at the European Championships.

Parken Stadium, home of Danish Superliga club FC Copenhagen, has a capacity of 38,000 and is due to host four matches at Euro 2020.

As well as Saint Petersburg, Budapest and Copenhagen, Euro 2020 games are due to be held in London, Glasgow, Dublin, Bilbao, Amsterdam, Munich, Rome, Bucharest and Baku. Earlier this month, it was reported that Bilbao, Dublin and Glasgow were at risk of losing hosting rights amid uncertainty over whether fans will be able to attend games.

Image: Monoklon/CC BY-SA 4.0/Edited for size