UEFA intended to name six Polish cities as Euro 2012 venues before Ukrainian officials persuaded the organisation to delay a decision, Ukraine federation president Grigory Surkis has revealed.
On Wednesday UEFA confirmed the Polish cities of Warsaw, Gdansk, Poznan and Wroclaw and the Ukrainian capital Kiev as venues. But it said the other Ukrainian cities Lviv, Donetsk and Kharkiv would have to wait until November 30 before they learned whether they would be used as venues in the 2012 finals.
UEFA president Michel Platini also warned Ukraine that Warsaw could stage the final if the infrastructure problems were not resolved.
“During my speech in Bucharest, I tried to persuade the UEFA executive committee to maintain the principle of equal proportion because violation of this principle could lead to social apathy in Ukraine,” Surkis told reporters.
“The Ukrainian people would take the inequality as a personal tragedy—they would consider themselves second rate people.
Bureaucracy, legal wrangling and limited funds have delayed the renovation of stadiums in Kiev and Lviv, and slowed work on improving the country’s infrastructure.