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UEFA considering 26-man squads for upcoming Euro Championship

UEFA is contemplating a significant adjustment for this summer’s European Championship in Germany.

The proposal on the table is to expand squad sizes from the current limit of 23 players to 26.

This move comes after extensive discussions with coaches of the qualifying teams during a meeting held in Dusseldorf, shedding light on the various perspectives and challenges faced by teams ahead of the prestigious tournament.

The decision-making process involves meticulous consideration and consultation with stakeholders.

UEFA, the governing body of European football, emphasised that it has taken note of the diverse opinions expressed during the discussions.

The matter was deliberated upon as part of a broader two-day workshop for the finalists, showcasing UEFA’s commitment to fostering dialogue and collaboration within the football community.

The proposal will now proceed to UEFA’s national team competitions committee before reaching its executive committee for a final decision.

The backdrop against which this deliberation occurs is essential to understand.

Euro 2020, held amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, witnessed an expansion of squads to accommodate three additional players.

This measure was aimed at mitigating the potential disruptions caused by the virus within teams. However, with Euro 2024 on the horizon, UEFA is contemplating whether to revert to the pre-2020 regulations or maintain the expanded squad sizes.

Gareth Southgate, initially favoured the traditional 23-man squads but has recently expressed openness to the idea of three extra players.

His rationale stems from the demanding conclusion to the domestic season, compounded by the return of players from long-term injuries.

With key fixtures such as the FA Cup, Europa League, and Champions League finals scheduled after the announcement of provisional squads, the need for a larger pool of players becomes apparent.

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