UEFA have confirmed that the venue for the Champions League final between Manchester City and Chelsea has been moved to Porto’s Estádio do Dragão. The 2020/21 season’s curtain raiser was set to take place at the Ataturk Olympic Stadium but the worsening Covid-19 situation in Istanbul changed that.
Rigid Covid 19 and quarantine protocols have seen a last minute venue change for the coveted Champions League final finals. Although reports indicated that the UK had been identified as the first alternative, severe rules and regulations have proved to be a major restriction in hosting the competition at Wembley. It's a major necessity for all arrivals from Turkey into the UK to quarantine at an airport hotel for 10 days which saw UEFA consider moving the final to either Portugal or the UK.
This makes it extremely difficult as well as owing to the fact that as many as 2,000 UEFA staff and sponsors, and international broadcast rights holders, need to be at the game. So that's why the Estadio do Dragao stadium has been selected to host the Champions League final. With Portugal being placed on the UK's green list, which enables travel without quarantine between the two nations, UEFA considers Lisbon as the correct option to host the coveted finals.
UEFA have disclosed that FC Porto's Estadio do Dragao is the ideal option with its capacity at 50,000 and UEFA is in talks with the Portuguese government to allow 20,000 spectators to attend the final. That would mean up to 6,000 tickets for fans of each club which could massive since fans have not been allowed to watch the games at Portugal this season. This will be the third final in Portugal in eight years but the first in Porto and it saw UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin overjoyed at the development.
“I think we can all agree that we hope never to experience a year like the one we have just endured. Fans have had to suffer more than twelve months without the ability to see their teams live and reaching a Champions League final is the pinnacle of club football. To deprive those supporters of the chance to see the match in person was not an option and I am delighted that this compromise has been found," Ceferin told UEFA's website.
“After the year that fans have endured, it is not right that they don’t have the chance to watch their teams in the biggest game of the season. Once again we have turned to our friends in Portugal to help both UEFA and the Champions League and I am, as always, very grateful to the FPF and the Portuguese Government for agreeing to stage the match at such short notice."