The date of the 2010 Eurovision Song Contest has been thrown into doubt. The UEFA Champions League final, the biggest match in club football, will take place on the evening of Saturday 22nd May. 2010 marks the first year that the game will take place on a Saturday instead of midweek. The date is the same as the preliminary date announced by the EBU for the 55th Eurovision Song Contest.
The Eurovision Song Contest and the UEFA Champions League final are two of the most viewed television shows in the world. It would be almost impossible for the two events to take place simultaneously because many broadcasters are contractually obliged to broadcast both events.
UEFA announced that the dates for the Champions League schedule last December. Because 2010 is also a World Cup year, the Champions League final will not be moved to a later date. It is therefore most likely that the Eurovision Song Contest will be moved by one week to either Saturday 15th May 2008 or Saturday 29th May.
esctoday.com asked the EBU this evening for a comment on the clash. An EBU Spokesman told us "The EBU set the preliminary dates for the 2010 Eurovision Song Contest before it became known that the Champions League would take place on the 22nd of May. Obviously, we are looking into this and will take it into consideration when taking a final decision on the dates for the 55th running of the contest together with NRK".
NRK have benefitted from the fact that Norway's victory in Saturday night's Eurovision Song Contest final fell as the country began it's National Day celebrations which falls annually on 17th May. It had already been seen by the fans as a special reason to hold the Eurovision Song Contest at a time when the celebration would fall within the Eurovision Song Contest activities. It may now be the case that the Eurovision Song Contest will be held on Saturday 15th May and that fans will have to stay an extra two days to enjoy the national celebrations.