- Associated Press - Friday, January 20, 2017

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) - The German soccer federation has formally launched a bid to host the 2024 European Championship.

Federation president Reinhard Grindel says it will choose 10 stadiums and work with Transparency International during bidding ahead of UEFA’s decision in September 2018.

German organizers of the 2006 World Cup are criminal suspects in a Swiss federal investigation of irregular payments linked to FIFA.

Still, Germany has been seen as the favorite to host Euro 2024 since reaching a deal with England to withdraw from competing to host the Euro 2020 semifinals and final.

A combined Scandinavian bid has also been suggested for Euro 2024. However, UEFA said last month a maximum of two hosts would get direct qualification to the 24-team tournament.

UEFA set a March 3 deadline for federations to express interest.

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