Michel Platini, the president of Uefa, has warned co-hosts Ukraine and Poland not to allow their Euro 2012 preparations to fall further behind schedule.
Platini said the stadium in the capital Kiev, which will hold the final, and the stadium in the western city of Lviv were far from nearing completion – a consequence, in part, of adverse weather conditions.
Poland and Ukraine were announced as co-hosts by Uefa in April 2007 with the tournament running between 9th June and 1st July 2012.
Ukraine’s new president, Viktor Yanukovich conceded that preparations for the tournament were “in terrible shape” but he stressed everything would be done to make sure work is finished on time and avoid a national disgrace.
Euro 2012 minister Borys Kolesnikov announced government plans to stump up £2.2 billion from the 2010 state budget to help modernise stadiums, develop airport infrastructure and build roads.
Speaking as he began a tour of Ukraine’s four host cities, Platini said:
We would like to see things are moving in the right direction.
The Euros will take place in 2012 and not in 2013. That is why now some decisions have to be taken.
We have trusted in Ukraine for a long time already and we have trusted in Poland for a long time.
In Lviv, the stadium is not completed but there are lots of hotels. In Donetsk, there is a fine stadium but for a city that will hold a semi-final there are few hotels.