The 2021 Women’s European Championships has been postponed until the summer of 2022, Uefa has confirmed.
The tournament in England, originally due to take place in the summer of 2021, will be played at the same venues as originally planned between 6 and 31 July.
European football’s governing body has been forced into a major reorganisation of its scheduling due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic across the continent.
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Uefa president Aleksander Ceferin said: “When we had to take an urgent decision on the postponement of Euro 2020, we always had the impact on Uefa Women’s Euro 2021 in mind.
“We have carefully considered all options, with our commitment to the growth of women’s football at the forefront of our thinking.
“By moving it to the following year, we are ensuring that our flagship women’s competition will be the only major football tournament of the summer, providing it with the spotlight it deserves.”
The final of the tournament will now take place on what will be the first Sunday of that year’s Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.
Uefa spoke to organisers of the Games as part of its discussions, along with the Football Association as the host nation.
Uefa’s chief of women’s football Nadine Kessler said: “The core question guiding us together with the English FA was, what is best for women’s football?
“With the Olympics now being confirmed for summer 2021, we firmly believe that moving to 2022 is in the best interests of the tournament, the players, the fans, women’s football partners and everybody involved in all areas and at all levels of the game.
“Uefa Women’s Euro is Europe’s biggest women’s sport event. It is also among the biggest sports events in the world, and therefore needs and deserves a platform of its own.”
The FA’s director of women’s football, Baroness Sue Campbell, said: “As a nation and at the FA, we are extremely proud to be hosting Euro 2021, and are fully committed to delivering a world-class experience for players, staff and fans alike as the best of the European game comes to England.
“However, the sporting calendar must adapt whilst the world tackles something much bigger than sport. In these unprecedented times, it should be reiterated that the health of our communities remains the absolute priority for us all.
“As a result, following discussions with Uefa, we fully support their decision to postpone Euro 2021. We agree that this decision will ultimately benefit the tournament, creating its own window in the football calendar. It will also allow us all more time following this challenging period to deliver an unforgettable event befitting of a home Euro.
“We have made excellent progress in the planning of the tournament to date, and particularly want to thank our host cities and venues for their ongoing commitment and support. We are also grateful to the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) for their collaboration as we sought to confirm these new dates and look forward to working together to showcase the best of women’s sport across both of our events.”