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FSA Cymru update: June 2020

*Our latest newsletter may have mistakenly directed you to our June update – if you want information on August click here*

Welcome to the second newsletter of 2020 – which will of course be concentrating on the postponement of Euro 2020 and what the future holds for Wales fans following the team overseas in the coming months…

We appreciate your support and value your input into all decisions we make, any questions can be sent to Paul Corkrey.

Football returns

Football is finally back, but not as we know it, for the moment anyway.

During this pandemic we have been trying to get members information about flights, hotel bookings and cancellations but it’s been a minefield of different scenarios for different situations and there is no clear general information that we could provide and decided no information was better than wrong information.

Some fans have been offered vouchers instead of refunds, whilst others have gone down the route of claiming money back through their credit card companies. Some airlines have been good whilst others have been trying everything not to refund monies.

Hotels and accommodation suppliers have also been inconsistent, even those that were supposed to be free cancellation. All in all, it has been a very frustrating and expensive time for many of our members but hopefully all of you have been able to keep yourselves and your families safe and well during these strange times.

Euro 2020: now Euro 2021

For those of you who did not watch the UEFA press conference, there were important announcements regarding Euro 2020 – the play-offs will now be taking place later this year on the 8th October and 12th November.

However, no decision was made on the return of fans to stadia – a decision on that has been pushed back until early July.

The 12 original Euro 2020 host cities will stage the tournament when it takes place in summer 2021, with the UEFA Executive Committee also confirming an updated match schedule for the finals.

All existing tickets remain valid for the tournament in 2021, though buyers who wish to return their tickets will have a final opportunity to request a refund from 18 to 25 June. Dates for potential future ticket sales – including for fans of the four teams that qualify via the play-offs – will be confirmed later.

UEFA also siad that the amount of ticket refunds has been low throughout Europe including from Welsh fans with the majority opting to keep their original tickets to use next year.

Our initial fixtures for Euro 2021 are as follows:

  • Wales vs Switzerland – June 12th, 3pm, Baku Olympic Stadium, Baku
  • Wales vs Turkey – June 16th, 6pm, Baku Olympic Stadium, Baku
  • Wales vs Italy –  June 20th, 6pm, Stadio Olimpico, Rome.

Welsh fans have already started booking flights and accommodation, but again we urge caution and advise bookings only through credit cards and accommodation with free cancellation.

A year is a long time and we would all expect this to be sorted by then, but fans have already been caught out once and many are rightly concerned about booking again but also have the issue of rising prices. It really is a balancing act of what to do for the best and it must be an individual decision based on your personal circumstances.

FSA Cymru and the Football Supporters Europe

FSE (Football Supporters Europe) is the biggest democratic fan network in Europe and Paul Corkrey from FSA Cymru was voted on to the executive board for the second time in 2019 for another two years.

During this pandemic FSE has been in contact with UEFA and the board mostly through WhatsApp and Zoom conference calls, trying to get as much information as possible whilst also offering our views on a way forward that will have more supporter involvement in decisions that affect us all.

With that in mind we collaborated with fan organisations throughout Europe to send a statement to UEFA, which in fairness has been accepted by them positively – you can read the full statement here.

These discussions should revolve around three core pillars:

  • The safe return of spectators
  • A recognition that the contribution made by the fans is irreplaceable
  • Multi-stakeholder dialogue on the future of football.

Moving forward with the Fan Embassies

Again, FSA Cymru are on the main core group of the FSE Fans’ Embassy division, so get fully supported with information from there, together with the support of the Home Office.

The next issue we are faced with are the Nations League matches scheduled originally for Autumn this year. It’s unclear whether fans will be allowed access to the stadiums and allowed to travel to the games at all.

The national team football windows of October and November 2020 will now feature triple-headers instead of double-headers, thus allowing the postponed Euro 2021 Play-Offs to be rescheduled at the beginning of the respective windows, on the 8th October and 12th November.

The group stage matches of the 2020-21 UEFA Nations League will be played on first Thursday in September (3rd) through to the following Tuesday (8th). This will be followed by Nations League games in October (10th-14th) and then on the 17th and 18th November.

International friendlies will be slotted in on the 7th-8th October and 11th-12th November.

Some countries are now allowing fans into stadiums, albeit in small numbers and still trying to observe social distancing, with Hungary being a prime example.

FAW Memberships

FAW membership packs have been delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but will be back on sale soon with details available from the FAW website. So keep an eye out for that.

Football is important to all our members but not as important as our familes’ health and safety, so we at FSA Cymru would like to add our thanks to the key workers and NHS for getting us through this difficult and challenging time.

We’re hopeful of a return to some sort of normality in the near future.

Related Articles

FSA Cymru update: February 2020

We’re happy to present to FSA Cymru members our first newsletter of 2020.

FSA Cymru update: March 2020

Welcome to the second newsletter of 2020 – which will of course be concentrating on the build up to Euro 2020 but we’ll first be looking at the minutes of our recent meeting with the Welsh FA (FAW).

FSA Cymru update: August 2020

Welcome to FSA Cymru’s third update of 2020 – which will of course be navigating the potential return to live football in the coming months…

Cylchlythyr FSA Cymru Ionawr 2020

Blwyddyn newydd dda i’n holl aelodau. Gydag Ewro 2020 ar y gorwel, bydd honno gobeithio’n flwyddyn werth chweil arall.

Funding partners

  • The Football Association
  • Premier Leage Fans Fund

Partners

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  • FSE
  • Kick It Out
  • Level Playing Field
  • Living Wage Foundation
  • SD Europe