O'Neill would accept Euro 2016 games behind closed doors

Reuters , Thursday 24 Mar 2016

Ireland manager Martin O'Neill would have no objections to Euro 2016 games being played behind closed doors in France if security chiefs decide it is the only alternative.

UEFA have reaffirmed their commitment to security for the June-July tournament following Tuesday's bombings in Brussels that killed at least 31 people, saying it would continue to monitor the level of risk for the event.

However, former Leicester City and Aston Villa manager O'Neill admitted that he would agree to games behind closed doors for safety reasons.

"There's talk about matches being played behind closed doors but the safety of people is of paramount importance and anything that is agreed upon, we will fall in line," O'Neill told British media.

"If that is an alternative and it's the only alternative, then if we are going to have the competition, we may have to comply with it."

O'Neill also said that it could get difficult for fans to interact with their teams given the security measures.

"If security is tightened, as it probably will be, then maybe the players might have to stay closer to the hotel (when they are not playing)," the 64-year-old added.

"I don't think we want to turn away supporters but at the same time, I think people will realise that security might be very, very tight."

Ireland open their Group E campaign against Sweden at the Stade de France in Paris on June 13, followed by games against Belgium and Italy.

 

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