The publication of the UEFA EURO 2012 match schedule was labelled a major step forward, with fans now knowing that the tournament will kick off in Warsaw and finish in Kyiv.
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UEFA EURO 2012 moved a little closer into view on Monday when the UEFA Executive Committee approved the match schedule for the final tournament in Poland and Ukraine.
A total of 31 games will be played to decide the next winners of the Henri Delaunay Cup in two years' time – and the Executive Committee's rubber-stamping of the fixture list at its meeting in Minsk, Belarus, today confirmed which cities will stage which matches.
The opening game of UEFA EURO 2012 will take place in the Polish capital Warsaw on Friday 8 June, while Ukraine's leading city Kyiv will be the setting for the final on Sunday 1 July.
Warsaw will also have the honour of hosting a semi-final – on Wednesday 27 June – with Donetsk in Ukraine holding the other last-four encounter the following day.
Warsaw, Gdansk, Donetsk and Kyiv are the chosen venues for the quarter-finals which will run across four days from Thursday 21 June to Sunday 24 June.
Meanwhile, fans of the two host nations will note that Poland play their first two group matches in Warsaw and their third in Wroclaw, while Ukraine kick off in Kyiv before two further group games in Donetsk.
UEFA president Michel Platini welcomed this next step towards the 2012 UEFA European Football Championship, telling a news conference in Minsk: "Although a lot of hard work still has to be done, the major decisions ahead of EURO 2012 have now been taken with the approval of this match schedule.
"Practically two years before the final round we are reassured by the work being undertaken in Poland and Ukraine."
Football Federation of Ukraine (FFU) president Grigoriy Surkis hailed the ratification of the schedule, saying: "The UEFA Executive Committee has shown patience and tolerance, and these virtues have helped us move a step forward and establish our match calendar.
"The decision taken today shows once again that we have risen to the occasion, and that we are drawing near to the kick-off."
The EURO is being staged in eight cities in the co-host nations - Gdansk, Poznan, Warsaw, Wroclaw in Poland, and Donetsk, Kharkiv, Kyiv, Lviv in Ukraine.
See the full match schedule here:
Friday 8 June 2012
#1: POL - A2, 18.00CET, Warsaw
#2: A3 - A4, 20.45CET, Wroclaw
Saturday 9 June 2012
#3: B1 - B2, 18.00CET, Kharkiv
#4: B3 - B4, 20.45CET, Lviv
Sunday 10 June 2012
#5: C1 - C2, 18.00CET, Gdansk
#6: C3 - C4, 20.45CET, Poznan
Monday 11 June 2012
#7: D3 - D4, 18.00CET, Donetsk
#8: UKR - D2, 20.45CET, Kyiv
Tuesday 12 June 2012
#9: A2 - A4, 18.00CET, Wroclaw
#10: POL - A3, 20.45CET, Warsaw
Wednesday 13 June 2012
#11: B2 - B4, 18.00CET, Lviv
#12: B1 - B3, 20.45CET, Kharkiv
Thursday 14 June 2012
#13: C2 - C4, 18.00CET, Poznan
#14: C1 - C3, 20.45CET, Gdansk
Friday 15 June 2012
#15: D2 - D4, 18.00CET, Kyiv
#16: UKR - D3, 20.45CET, Donetsk
Saturday 16 June 2012
#17: A4 - POL, 20.45CET, Wroclaw
#18: A2 - A3, 20.45CET, Warsaw
Sunday 17 June 2012
#19: B4 - B1, 20.45CET, Kharkiv
#20: B2 - B3, 20.45CET, Lviv
Monday 18 June 2012
#21: C4 - C1, 20.45CET, Gdansk
#22: C2 - C3, 20.45CET, Poznan
Tuesday 19 June 2012
#23: D4 - UKR, 20.45CET, Donetsk
#24: D2 - D3, 20.45CET, Kyiv
Wednesday 20 June 2012
Thursday 21 June 2012
#25: 1A - 2B, 20.45CET, Warsaw
Friday 22 June 2012
#26: 1B - 2A, 20.45CET, Gdansk
Saturday 23 June 2012
#27: 1C - 2D, 20.45CET, Donetsk
Sunday 24 June 2012
#28: 1D - 2C, 20.45CET, Kyiv
Monday 25 June 2012
Tuesday 26 June 2012
Wednesday 27 June 2012
#29: W#25 - W#27, 20.45CET, Donetsk
Thursday 28 June 2012
#30: W#26 - W#28, 20.45CET, Warsaw
Friday 29 June 2012
Saturday 30 June 2012
Sunday 1 July 2012
#31: W#29 - W#30, 20.45CET, Kyiv