Despite the disappointment of this year’s sporting calendar, with many events postponed due to coronavirus, 2021 looks to be an edge-of-your-seat, action-packed thriller to compensate. Here, we’ve highlighted some of the most high-profile and exciting events scheduled to take place over the next 12 months… hopefully.

Euro 2020 (2021)

Following its postponement earlier this year, UEFA Euro 2020, will be held across Europe in June and July. The tournament will see the Three Lions take on some of the world’s best in in a bid to become European Champions for the very first time.

After the national heartbreak of a semi-final exit to Croatia at the World Cup in Russia two years ago, the likes of Harry Kane and Harry Maguire will return with a new vigour and maturity, eager to deliver the long anticipated success the country craves, with Gareth Southgate and his waistcoat leading the way once more. With England’s group games and the semi-finals and final taking place at Wembley, this could be their chance. Scotland’s long awaited return to tournament football after 23 years will also be a special moment.


Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics

With the 2020 Olympic Games the first to be cancelled outside a period of conflict, the 2021 games have already booked their place in history.

The largest sporting event in the world promises to provide more astonishing athletes, competition and gamesmanship for fans – along with the potential for several new world records! Team GB is filled with promise and potential, as the legacy of London 2012 continues to inspire the likes of Freya Anderson and Jemma Reekie to achieve their lifelong dream of winning gold.

With household names like Olympic champions Sir Mo Farah, Adam Peaty and Max Whitlock looking to continue their reign in their respective sports, the delay may come as more of a hindrance than a help, but these British legends will be reluctant to hand over their titles on the ultimate stage.

Tokyo will also host the Paralympic games next summer, and both tournament organisers and athletes alike will be hoping that the surge in global interest generated in London and Rio continues. The games will feature British swimming star Ellie Simmonds OBE, who is chasing her sixth Olympic gold medal, as well as Strictly Come Dancing star Will Bayley.



Rugby League World Cup

The 2021 Rugby League World Cup (RLWC2021) is set to be the biggest tournament in the sport’s history. Planned to be held in England across October and November 2021, RLWC2021 will, for the first time, host the men’s, women’s, wheelchair and physical disability tournaments in parallel, providing both an intriguing and inclusive tournament for the entire nation to enjoy.

Whilst a double-header final will predictably be held at the traditional location of Old Trafford, fixtures will take place all over the country. In what is an extremely bold move, Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium will stage one of the men’s semi-finals, whilst the likes of Anfield and Sheffield United’s Bramall Lane have also been selected as tournament venues to help expand the sport outside of its northern heartlands.

England, coached by rugby league legend Shaun Wane, will be looking to go one further this time around after falling to a narrow 6-0 final defeat at the hands of fierce rivals Australia in the 2017 edition of the tournament, whilst the 2013 semi-final defeat to New Zealand at Wembley Stadium also remains as a bitter pill to swallow.

Whether England manage to lift the Paul Barrière Trophy, or not, it’s almost certain that RLWC2021’s legacy could propel the sport back into the mainstream after years in the wilderness.


Rugby Union – Six Nations and Women’s Rugby World Cup

The 2020 Six Nations may have only just finished – nine months after it started – but the 2021 event is already shaping up to be one of the most keenly contested in recent years. Eddie Jones’ England side will once again be favourites following their success in the 2020 version and the newly formed Autumn Nations Cup, but a re-emerging French side will fancy their chances after only losing out on the title to points difference. The pair meet at Twickenham in round four and is already being considered as the title decider. Scotland now boast the strongest squad they’ve had in over a decade and will also feel cautiously optimistic about their chances, despite not winning the Championship since 1999 – when it was the Five Nations.

The Women’s World Cup is set to take place in New Zealand and promises to be the biggest event yet. With the hosts and Australia already drawn to face each other in Pool A, tournament organisers couldn’t be more excited about what next September might bring. As well as being hosts, the All Blacks are holders and five-time winners, defeating England in the 2017 final. In fact, the only time the All Blacks haven’t won the tournament since the 1998 edition is when England won it in 2014. Of the five titles New Zealand have won, four have come by beating England in the final, so don’t bet against either side being crowned World Champions in 2021.


The return of golf

All four of golf’s major tournaments are set to return next year with fans – the US Open, PGA Championship, Masters and Open Championship. The Ryder Cup will also be up for grabs following its postwomen in September, and instead will take place from September 21-26 in at Whistling Straits in the US. Europe have four of the last five tournaments, including at 17.5-10.5 thumping of the US in France in 2018. The likes of Rory McIlroy and Ryder Cup legend Ian Poulter will be hoping for more of the same next year.