Munich launches bid to host Euro 2020 matches

BERLIN Thu Feb 21, 2013 4:41pm GMT

A general view shows the seats of the Allianz Arena stadium in Munich on April 16, 2012. REUTERS/Michaela Rehle

A general view shows the seats of the Allianz Arena stadium in Munich on April 16, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Michaela Rehle

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BERLIN (Reuters) - Bavaria, its capital Munich and Bayern Munich launched a joint bid on Thursday to host Euro 2020 soccer matches at the club's Allianz Arena.

"We have shown by hosting the 2012 Champions League final that we are in a position to be good and nice host," Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge told reporters in a news conference with Munich mayor Christian Ude and Bayern premier Horst Seehofer.

"The stadium is known around Europe," he said of the Allianz Arena, completed before the 2006 World Cup held in Germany.

Euro 2020 will be held in 13 cities across the continent and the semi-finals and final will be played in the same stadium, European soccer's governing body UEFA said last month.

"That would be the absolute highlight," said Rummenigge about the possibility of staging the final three matches of the competition.

"I am confident Munich will get the nod," Rummenigge said. One city per country will be picked for the matches, with the capital Berlin also considered a possible candidate for games during Euro 2020.

Bayern said they would submit the candidacy with UEFA through the German football association with a decision expected by September 2014.

"Bayern Munich have shown in numerous cases that they are tolerant hosts," said Seehofer. "That is our biggest asset."

Munich has hosted several other major events in the past including the 1972 Summer Olympics, matches -including the final - for the 1974 soccer World Cup and the 2006 World Cup.

The Bavarian capital also unsuccessfully bid for the 2018 Winter Olympics.

Bayern Munich lost to Chelsea in last year's Champions League final in the city.

(Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; Editing by Clare Fallon and Alison Wildey)

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