Euro 2020: Angela Merkel shares 'grave concern' over number of fans allowed at Wembley

2 July 2021, 16:47

Angela Merkel revealed her concerns over the number of people allowed to attend Wembley for Euro 2020.
Angela Merkel revealed her concerns over the number of people allowed to attend Wembley for Euro 2020. Picture: PA

By Emma Soteriou

Angela Merkel has shared "grave concern" over the number of people allowed to attend Wembley for the Euro 2020 matches.

The German Chancellor voiced her concerns while on her final trip to the UK, before she steps down from her role later in the year.

Over 40,000 supporters were able to attend the match between England and Germany at Wembley, as part of the government's Events Research Programme, almost doubling the 22,500 capacity allowed at the group stages.

That said, it has since been confirmed that the capacity for the Euro 2020 semi finals and final will be increased further to more than 60,000.

Ms Merkel told a joint conference: "I say this with grave concern. I have also said this to the Prime Minister."

"We in Germany, as you know, have less people attend games in the Munich stadium but the British Government will obviously take its own decision.

"But I am very much concerned whether it is not a bit too much."

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However, Boris Johnson said he had no plans to restrict crowds for the remaining games at the stadium.

"Of course we will follow the scientific guidance, the advice if we receive any such suggestion," he explained.

"But, at the moment, the position is very clear in the UK.

"We have certain events we can put on in a careful and controlled manner with testing of everybody who goes there.

"There in the UK we have built up a very considerable wall of immunity against the disease by our vaccination programme."

This came after Ms Merkel had talks with the Prime Minister about British holidaymakers being allowed to visit Germany without quarantine.

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England beat Germany 2-0 at Wembley.
England beat Germany 2-0 at Wembley. Picture: PA

Ms Merkel also addressed Germany's defeat against England earlier in the week, with Mr Johnson joking that Germany had broken with its tradition of beating England in football tournaments.

The Prime Minister said: "In the course of that time some things have changed beyond recognition but for much of your tenure it was certainly a tradition, Angela, for England to lose to Germany in international football tournaments.

"I'm obviously grateful to you for breaking with that tradition, just for once."

"Obviously this was not a voluntary offer on my side to create the right mood for this visit but I have to accept it," Ms Merkel said in response.

"You deserved it but we were a little bit sad but now the best of luck to the British team."

England will be facing off against Ukraine on Saturday 3 June.