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Opinions & Interviews

11 May 2019

Belarus to get ready to host European football championship in two years

Belarus to get ready to host European football championship in two years

MINSK, 11 May (BelTA) – In two years Belarus will be ready to host European football championship, Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko told the media as he visited the Students Village in Minsk on 11 May, BelTA has learned.

The head of state believes that Belarus will hold the 2nd European Games at a high level, and after a couple of years will be happy to host larger competitions such as the UEFA European Football Championship. Though the country needs a spacious national stadium for this. Chinese partners have already promised to build this facility and also a world-class swimming pool. Chinese President Xi Jinping showed the mockups of the future facilities to Aleksandr Lukashenko recently. According to the Belarusian head of state, these facilities are very expensive and the Chinese partners act like real friends having promised to build them.

“We have enough of them [swimming pools] in the country but we do not have the pools good enough to host world cups, European championships in aquatics. Russians did great. They built such a pool in Kazan. China has promised to build a similar swimming pool at their own expense. It will be a gift from the Chinese people to the Belarusian people. We will do this in the next two years and then we will be able to aspire to host any event,” Aleksandr Lukashenko noted.

However, Aleksandr Lukashenko believes that the number of sports grounds is not that important compared to the spirit and mood of people during such events. He remembered how the entire Belarus followed the 2014 IIHF World Championship, and there were just two ice arenas in Minsk. “Our games should be heartwarming. We want all people in Belarus to live by the games and know that it was them who won the right to host this tournament and who have done a lot for this. Warmheartedness is in the mentality of our people, their DNA. We will show this kindness to all who will come to our games,” the head of state stressed.

With regard to the preparation of Minsk to the upcoming sports event, the president said that Minsk is the ideal city for living and this is what guests should see. “May the Belarusian capital be not so rich as Moscow but many well-known Russians love to come here and even buy land and housing here,” the head of state noted.

 

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