It was a big hit in the city of Cologne’s EM plans: As the city officially announced on May 2, 2024, another public viewing area was needed – at relatively short notice. And it was found on Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer.

The reason: A massive rush of British football fans is expected in Cologne for the games with British participation, Scotland against Switzerland (June 19th, 9 p.m.) and England against Slovenia (June 25th, 9 p.m.)!

As head of the sports department Gregor Timmer confirmed at an information evening for residents on Monday evening (May 13th), there are expected to be around 100,000 British football fans (in coordination with fan associations from both countries)!

This means: The areas at the Tanzbrunnen (for around 12,500 people) and at the Heumarkt (around 7,500 people), where public viewing also takes place, are not enough to keep the immense crowds under control.

That’s why a temporary area has to be set up and dismantled on Konrad-Adenauer-Ufer. There will be space for around 50,000 people per game. The city examined 26 areas; according to its own information, only the one on the banks of the Rhine met all the necessary criteria (location, capacity, infrastructure and much more).

The Deutzer Werft was also discussed, but according to the development plan only two major events are allowed there per year – these are already planned with the spring and autumn fair.

The supposed sufferers: the residents. And they made their displeasure clear at the information event (in the Mariott Hotel at the cathedral).

“You are presenting us with a fait accompli,” said one resident angrily. “No one was asked. I really have the feeling that they have never looked around our neighborhood before.” The look at the parking situation in particular worries many local people; the already miserable search near the cathedral is made worse by the announced closures around the area both games further tightened. Interjections in this direction received loud applause on Monday evening.

“We are very aware that this is a burden for all of them,” Sven Stolz, the city’s EM representative, tried to calm those present. “But it is the only solution that is feasible.”

Important from the city’s perspective: The public viewing on the Rhine is not intended to be an entertainment event, but is necessary for security reasons. That’s why there should only be quiet music and the closures for set-up and dismantling should be kept short. British fans will watch their team’s games on the Rhine on six screens.

The fact that Cologne has to take this measure at all is a bit of bad luck. Since the European Championship draw in December 2023, it has been clear that England and Scotland will come to Cologne; alongside the Dutch fans, they usually have the biggest rush.

But: The city is also preparing for possible further events. For example, neighboring Belgium will play against Romania on June 22nd, also in Cologne. Since it’s a Saturday, there could also be a lot of Belgian fans on the way. As things stand, the dimensions should be significantly smaller than the games with the British teams.

In addition, European Championship euphoria surrounding the German team (e.g. a final) could also lead to further public viewing events on the banks of the Rhine – however, many of the residents are likely to welcome an early exit of the DFB team based on the latest developments.

By Thomas Werner

It was already known that those responsible at FC Bayern showed interest in coach Oliver Glasner. Now there are new details: Even Uli Hoeneß is said to have called the Austrian. However, Glasner’s club Crystal Palace demanded a completely astronomical transfer fee.

The German national team’s European Championship squad is announced player by player. Not there: Mats Hummels. Despite his outstanding form at Borussia Dortmund under national coach Julian Nagelsmann, the veteran is left out. An undignified end to his DFB career.

The original for this article “Residents outraged by EM decision because of Brits: “No one was asked!”” comes from