France to Host Euro 2016

Euro 2016 is going to France. With President Nicolas Sarkozy making the final push for the country’s bid, France completed a hairline victory against Turkey for the right to host Euro 2016, arguably Europe’s biggest football event.

French Football Federation president Jean-Pierre Escalettes called the victory “a great day” for France but also heaped praise on losing finalists Turkey and Italy. “I have a thought for our friends in Turkey and Italy – putting myself in their place I can imagine their disappointment and frustration after months and months of work.”

The result was especially hard to fathom for Turkey, which lost for the third-straight time in its bid to bring the UEFA European Football Championship to the country. Turkey lost its bid to Switzerland and Austria for Euro 2008 and to Ukraine and Poland, the countries that will jointly host Euro 2012.

France is one of the winningest countries in the history of the Euro Championship, capturing the title in 1984 and 2000. Euro 2012 will be played in 12 venues, including in the Stade de France, where the country won the 1998 World Cup final against Brazil.