15 national associations expressed interest in hosting of the 2019 finals. Champions League, Europa League, Women’s Champions League and Super Cup will be decided among 19 stadia!
UEFA welcomed expressions of interest by 15 member associations, who hope to get one or more of the 2019 cup finals. As of yet these aren’t official bids, those will be submitted by June 5. In September UEFA’s Executive Committee will vote on all accepted and approved bids.
Champions League final
The least competitive race is that between Baku and Madrid. The Azerbaijani capital already has a modern stadium which recently hosted the first European Games and will be the host of Euro 2020, while Madrid lost out on Euro hosting rights. This might give Spanish bidders the needed edge on Baku, especially with UEFA’s tendency to award finals to brand new stadiums. Both stadia well exceed minimum capacity requirement of 60,000.
Europa League final
Here the competition becomes much, much more fierce. Six national associations consider bidding. The only brand new stadium competing is Vodafone Arena in Istanbul, though Sevilla’s Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan will by 2019 see the end of its complete revamp as well.
Baku wants a taste of this cup final as well, this time with regional rivals from Tbilisi, who recently hosted the Super Cup. The most experienced (or aged, if you will) contender is Hampden Park, while Germany needs to decide by June whether to confirm Frankfurt or Stuttgart as their candidate, because each association can list only one venue.
Women’s Champions League final
By far the most diverse list of possible candidates has been presented for the biggest female game. It might be held at venues as modest as Lithuania’s temporary national stadium or Getafe’s Coliseum Alfonso Perez, while at the same time much larger Astana Arena and Hampden Park could also compete. Two medium-sized and centrally-located stadia i Budapest and Prague complete the list.
Clash between CL and EL winners is a game that only recently opened up for bidding. Officially candidates don’t need to have large stadiums, with the requirement set below 20,000. This is aimed at offering a major club game to smaller associations with fewer modern stadia.
Well, the list of potential candidates isn’t quite in line with this principle. Of course, you might point out to the new/rebuilt Groupama Arena, Windsor Park, Sammy Ofer Stadium or Arena Kombetare, but much larger competitors from Istanbul, Glasgow and Warsaw/Gdansk are also being considered. The list is completed by last year’s Euro host Toulouse and Astana Arena in Kazakhstan.