As we all know, Euro 2020 has been postponed. Is it possible that after the coronavirus crisis it will emerge stronger than ever? Football-hungry fans and revived sports industry will surely do everything to make it special! Today STATSCORE is taking a deep look at the tournament’s rich and fascinating history.
When did the European Championship start?
In 1927, the French Football Federation secretary-general Henri Delaunay announced his idea of holding a pan-European football tournament. He probably didn’t expect that it would take more than 30 years to put it into practice. In fact, UEFA was founded only in 1954, and the first edition of Euro was held in 1960. Unfortunately, Delaunay didn’t live to see his dream come true – he died in 1955. However, his impact hadn’t been forgotten, and UEFA honoured him by giving the Championship trophy his name.
The first edition of the European Nations’ Cup was held in France, and it was played as a knockout competition. The qualifying round consisted of home-and-away matches played between 17 nations. The top four teams – France, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia, and the Soviet Union – took part in the final round to contest the trophy. The final game was won by the Soviet Union who beat Yugoslavia 2-1.
Who won the most Euro championships?
15 stagings of the competitions have been held.
- Germany/West Germany (1972, 1980, 1996) and Spain (1964, 2008, 2012) each won three European championships. Germany also lost three times in the final game (1976, 1992, 2008), while Spain lost one such game (1984).
- France won two titles (1984, 2000), and lost one final (2016)
- The Soviet Union won once (1960), and also reached the final in 1964, 1972, and 1988.
- Italy, Czech Republic, Portugal, Netherlands, Denmark and Greece won one title each.
Statistical highlights of Euro
- Most finishes in the top two – Germany, 6 (1972, 1976, 1980, 1992, 1996, 2008)
- Most appearances – Germany, 12 (every edition since 1972)
- Most third/fourth-place finishes – Netherlands, 4 (1976, 1992, 2000, 2004)
- Most consecutive championships – Spain, 2 (2008, 2012)
- Longest gap between titles – Spain, 44 years (1964, 2008)
- Titles won by host teams – Spain (1964), Italy (1968), France (1984)
- Most matches played (overall) – Germany, 49
- Most goals scored (overall) – Germany, 72
- Most goals in a single final tournament – France (1984), 14
- most goals scored (in a single tournament) – Michel Platini (France, 1984) – 9
- most goals scored (overall) – Michel Platini (France), Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal)
- most hat-tricks – Michel Platini (France, 1984) – 2
- most clean sheets – Edwin van der Sar (Netherlands, 1996 – 2008) – 9
- youngest player – 18 yrs 71 days: Jetro Willems (Netherlands 0-1 Denmark, 09/06/12)
- youngest scorer – 18 yrs 141 days: Johan Vonlanthen (Switzerland 1-3 France, 21/06/04)
2021 will be the first Pan-European edition
Nine countries hosted the competition on their own (France – three times, Spain, Italy – twice, Belgium, Yugoslavia, Germany, Sweden, England, Portugal).
On three occasions there were two hosts – in 2000 (Belgium and Netherlands), 2008 (Austra and Switzerland), and 2012 (Poland and Ukraine).
The 2021 edition will be the first Pan-European staging of the tournament. It will be held in 12 cities in 12 UEFA countries.
Games will be held in the following cities: Baku (Azerbaijan), Minsk (Belarus), Brussels (Belgium), Sofia (Bulgaria), Copenhagen (Denmark) London (England), Munich (Germany), Budapest (Hungary), Jerusalem (Israel), Rome (Italy), Skopje (Macedonia), Amsterdam (the Netherlands), Dublin (Republic of Ireland), Bucharest (Romania), Saint Petersburg (Russia), Glasgow (Scotland), Bilbao (Spain), Stockholm (Sweden), Cardiff (Wales).
This is not the only reason why it will be a special edition. It is expected that football-hungry fans, who suffered when the tournament had to be postponed because of the coronavirus outbreak, will make 2021 the most spectacular on in history.
It will also be a great chance for betting companies to make a huge comeback and increase their revenues! STATSCORE’s CupCenter is here to help you do that!
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