Top Olympic Bid Stories of 2012: #6 Euro Cup Bid Threatens Istanbul 2020

GamesBids.com presents the fifth annual Top Ten list of Olympic Bid Stories for 2012. These stories impacted the course of Olympic bids, or the Olympic bid process, and formed interesting plotlines for the year. We’ll run them down from 10th to 1st during the holiday season.

Top Olympic Bid Stories of 2012: #6 Euro Cup Bid Threatens Istanbul 2020

Istanbul’s bid to host the 2020 Olympic Games almost took a fatal blow in May when it appeared Turkey would be the only applicant to host the UEFA Euro Cup Football Championships in the same year. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) would not likely want to share the stage with another major sport event during the same season, being forced to draw upon split infrastructure budgets, sponsorship funds and media attention.

Turkey’s economy is growing, unlike many other European nations, and in the current fiscal environment is in a comparably good position to bid for either the Olympics or the Euro – but not both.

But within hours of the UEFA deadline, other interested countries were stepping forward including a joint bid from Scotland and Wales and another from Georgia. When Baku was eliminated from 2020 Olympic bid contention a week later, Azerbaijan teamed up with Georgia for a joint bid. UEFA then reopened the application process for “another few months”.

The new Euro Cup interest diminished the “risk” that Turkey would be selected to host the event and delayed the decision until after the 2020 Olympic Games are awarded.