Backing for Fan Zone in Wrexham if Euro bid is successful


Staff reporter (Leader Live)

BUSINESSES and Wrexham Council have welcomed the idea of the town becoming a football fan zone, if Wales’ bid to host matches in the UEFA Euro 2020 Championships is successful.

The Football Association of Wales is launching its bid this week, nominating Cardiff’s Millennium Stadium as a potential venue for group games of the major tournament.

Unlike previous championships, the 2020 event will be spread across cities in Europe rather than having a designated host nation.

And should Wales be successful in securing its slice of the action, Wrexham could also be in line to play a part.

FAW spokesman Ian Gwyn Hughes said: “We would have fan zones all over Wales if we were successful – and Wrexham could be an option.”

Mr Gwyn Hughes said more details of the bid will be revealed tomorrow.

Fan zones have been hugely successful at previous international football tournaments since they were first used at the 2002 World Cup in Japan and South Korea.

They see supporters from all nations gather together to enjoy watching games on big screens in towns and city centres of host countries.

Alex Jones, owner of the Bank Wine Bar in town, said he can see benefits for the local economy.

“Anything like this which would bring people into the town and spending money can only be a good thing,” he said.

“I’m a rugby fan myself but know communal events like this bring people together.

“If it attracts people into town, night or day, then I welcome it.

“I’d hope local businesses would be allowed to tender for any opportunities that come with it and if that is the case, I’d be really happy.”

Cllr Mark Pritchard, Deputy Leader of Wrexham Council, said: “As an authority, we would support any bid to bring a major global sporting event such as Euro 2020 to Wales.

“In recent years, Wrexham has staged some major sporting occasions, including matches at the Rugby League World Cup 2013 as well as international football.

“We want to see more events of this calibre coming to the town.

“The whole town gets behind these type of events and I’m sure that would be the case if Wales bid to host matches at Euro 2020 is successful.

He added: “The bid is at an early stage and we will need to have discussions with the FAW – but we’d support any event that enhances the profile of both Wrexham and Wales as a whole.”

See full story in the Leader

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