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UEFA open to proposals from coaches from in 23 man squad to 26 in Euro 2024

Organizer of the European Championship, UEFA, announced on Thursday its willingness to consider expanding national team squads from 23 to 26 players for the upcoming tournament in Germany.

The suggestion for larger squads came from Netherlands coach Ronald Koeman, who argued that the prevalence of injuries in modern football justified the need for more players.

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During Euro 2020, which was postponed to 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the FIFA World Cup in 2022, UEFA permitted teams to have 26-man squads to accommodate health protocols and potential player isolations.

However, UEFA had previously settled on 23-player squads for Euro 2024.

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In preparation for the tournament, UEFA plans to convene coaches and officials from all 24 participating teams in Düsseldorf, Germany, in two weeks’ time.

“A workshop with the participating teams will be held on April 8 and on that occasion UEFA will listen to the views of the coaches,” the European football body said. “Any idea in this respect will then be considered and assessed.”

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Koeman wants his national federation to ask UEFA for an increase and noted this week “you have to deal more with injuries these days.”

“It is about the load carrying ability of the players,” Koeman said on Tuesday after his team’s 2-1 loss to Germany, suggesting host team coach Julian Nagelsmann agreed.

England coach Gareth Southgate said there had been a “little bit of talk amongst some of the coaches” to ask for 26.

Southgate said he did not plan to pressure UEFA for an increase, though acknowledged the extra numbers would lessen the risk of selecting preferred players who carried injuries.

“We’ve been able to give people time,” said Southgate, who is taking England to his fourth major tournament as the coach, “but with 23 that’s definitely more difficult.”

The extent of interest among the 24 coaches for a larger squad, potentially accommodating more players who may not see significant game time, remains uncertain.

Euro 2024 is scheduled to take place from June 14 to July 14 across 10 cities in Germany.

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