The organizers of the European Nations Cup, Euro 2020, have hinted at the possibility of imposing fines on participating teams if their players exclude the competition’s sponsor drinks, during press conferences.
Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo removed two bottles of Coca-Cola during a press conference and urged people to drink water.
The next day, France midfielder Paul Pogba made the same move, removing a bottle of beer knowing that he is a practicing Muslim. Italian player Manuel Locatelli replaced Coca-Cola with water on Wednesday.
On Thursday, tournament organizers said UEFA reminded the participating teams that partnerships are part of the tournament’s achievement to ensure the development of football across Europe, including for women and youth.
Euro 2020 director Martin Kalin said that players “are obliged by contracts with their federations to abide by the rules of the tournament.”
However, Kalin said he understood that players like Pogba would do this for reasons of religious beliefs.
Kalin referred to the “potential” of disciplinary action.
The teams were reminded of the laws contained in the contracts they signed.
The European Football Association (UEFA) does not intend to impose direct fines on players, and any type of penalty is subject to the discretion of the national football associations.
“We don’t impose fines on players directly by UEFA, we will always do so through the national association and after that they can decide whether to sanction the player,” Kalin said.