The current rising political tension between Russia and Ukraine could impact the Champions League final this season as it could be moved elsewhere.
UEFA Champions League final 2021/22 has been scheduled to be held in Krestovsky Stadium, St.Petersburg. However, the latest development of the Russia-Ukraine conflict might endanger their chance to stage the first UCL final since Moscow 2008. The game is set to be played there on May, 28.
The European football governing body has been urged to take action immediately regarding the current situation in the Eastern Europe. Yet, there seems to be no confirmation on the switching venue decision. They officially stated as follows:
'UEFA is constantly and closely monitoring the situation. At present, there are no plans to change the venue.'
If the switch venue is given a green light, then it will not be the first time to move UCL final in almost at the last minutes. In fact, since the world pandemic emerged,there has always changing venues. In 2020 final, Istanbul which had been originally selected to hold the summit. Yet, it was moved to Da Luz stadium in Lisbon. Then the 2021 final, which was supposedly staged in Istanbul to compensate its cancellation in the previous year, was once again switched to Dragao Stadium, Porto. Both final editions had been moved because of the fact that Turkey was red-listed for Covid-19 at that time.
According to various sources, should the switch be approved, London's Wembley Stadium is tipped to stage this year's final. The home turf of England national team has been as a matter of fact picked to host the 2023/24 final. There has been no confirmation yet if holding 2022 final would mean moving their hosting right to this year or swapping with Gazprom Arena, another well-known name for Krestovsky stadium, for 2024 edition.
Wembley Stadium has already staged UEFA Champions League/ Cup /European Cup final seven times. The first one was in 1963 edition when AC Milan topped Benfica 2-1. The following ones were in 1968, 1971, 1978, 1992, 2011 and 2013, when all German final took place. Bayern Munich was the last team to lift the trophy at this stadium. Barcelona is the only team which won twice here, in 1992 and 2011, while the last English side who clinched the title in one of the most iconic venues in the world is Liverpool. They won the first title in 1978 after thumping Club Brugge 1-0.