Stewart Regan believes the city of Glasgow has combined to produce an “excellent” bid to become a host city for UEFA Euro 2020; a celebration of the European Championships’ 60th anniversary.
The Scottish FA Chief Executive flew out to Geneva, Switzerland, alongside the President, Campbell Ogilvie, ahead of Friday’s announcement by the UEFA Executive Committee.
Nineteen National Associations have submitted a bid, with 13 host cities designated for either the Finals Package or Standard Package, which includes a quarter-final or round of 16 fixture.
The Scottish FA’s bid for a Standard Package has been a multi-agency venture involving the Scottish Government, Glasgow City Council, Glasgow City Marketing Bureau, EventScotland and Hampden Park Ltd.
The Chief Executive believes a mixture of Hampden Park’s rich history of European competition and the stadium’s recent successful hosting of the best-ever Commonwealth Games makes Glasgow and Scotland a reliable and rousing option for Euro 2020.
“Firstly, we have every reason to be positive ahead of Friday’s announcement,” said Regan. “Hampden Park is synonymous with great moments in European football: from arguably the greatest game ever, between Real Madrid and Eintracht Frankfurt, in the 1960 European Championships, to arguably the greatest goal ever scored in the Champions League, by Zinedine Zidane for Real against Bayer Leverkusen in 2002.
“On top of that, the stadium, the city and the country have vast experience in putting on world-class entertainment. The Commonwealth Games at Hampden have been hailed as the best ever and Scotland will shortly be hosting the Ryder Cup before a huge global television audience.
“I am certain that the city of Glasgow and the National Stadium would provide an ideal venue for the European Championships’ 60th birthday party and I would like to thank everyone involved in putting this excellent bid together.”
Shona Robison, Cabinet Secretary for Sport: “Best of luck to everyone in Switzerland as they look to secure Scotland’s place in the 60th anniversary of the Euro Championship. Scotland is a natural home for big events and Hampden is a special stadium with a long history in major footballing events.
“Thanks to a strong collaborative effort between the Scottish Government, Glasgow City Council, EventScotland, and the Scottish FA we have a strong bid that has an excellent chance of being successful. Only a short time ago we saw how working together brought the best Commonwealth Games ever to Scotland. Next week, as a country, we will be delivering a spectacular Ryder Cup. We will be using the same knowhow and passion to welcome fans from across Europe as part of EURO 2020.”
Councillor Gordon Matheson, Leader of Glasgow City Council and Chair of Glasgow City Marketing Bureau (GCMB), said: “Glasgow enjoys a proud reputation as one of the world’s great footballing cities and Hampden, in particular, has become a stadium familiar to football fans throughout Europe.
“As a city, we recognise the value of football and major sporting events. We have a fantastic track record in attracting and delivering some of the biggest global sporting championships – from the Champions League and UEFA Cup finals to the best ever Commonwealth Games – and we’re ranked as one of the top 10 ultimate sports cities in the world, ahead of the likes of Paris, Madrid and Amsterdam.
“In partnership with the Scottish FA and Scottish Government we’re ready to show that Glasgow and Hampden will provide a truly memorable backdrop to mark UEFA’s 60th anniversary EURO celebration. This is a real opportunity to bring some of Europe’s top footballing stars to Glasgow, support our national game and benefit the economy.”
Paul Bush OBE, Chief Operating Officer for EventScotland, said: "Scotland is the perfect stage for events and we have the capacity, capability and credibility to host the biggest properties in world sport. The Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games demonstrated Scotland's credentials on the international stage and we are set to welcome the world once more to the Ryder Cup in a little over one weeks' time.
"Major brands understand the value of hosting events in Scotland, and we have a strong track record of successful activation through sponsorship and stand-alone events. Our venue infrastructure is complimented by our world-class accommodation, hospitality and leisure industries, which ensure we can offer the very best VIP and spectator experience. Football is at the heart of Scotland and Glasgow, as an iconic European city, would be a perfect host for UEFA Euro 2020."