12 most iconic moments in European Championship historical past

Cristiano Ronaldo lifts Euro 2016 trophy with Portugal

Iconic moments in European Championship historical past

Within the 60-year historical past of the European Championships, this world-famous quadrennial worldwide competitors has produced some really wonderful moments.

So, to rely all the way down to Euro 2020, the sixteenth staging of the European Championships, listed below are the 11 most ironic matches and moments in it’s historical past, up to now.

12: England 1-2 Iceland: Euro 2016 Spherical of 16

A match that’ll by no means be forgotten happened on 27 June 2016 at Stade de Good.

Europe’s two largest Islands went face to face as footballing superpowers England took on minnows Iceland.

At this level, England had been competing of their twenty third main match whereas Iceland had been making their debut.

Heimir Hallgrímsson and Lars Lagerbäck’s aspect had triggered an actual upset in qualifying, ending second in Group A above Turkey and the Netherlands.

They then snuck by the group part in France, drawing 1-1 with Portugal and Hungary earlier than beating Austria within the final minute to succeed in the spherical of 16.

When England took the lead in simply the fourth minute by a Wayne Rooney penalty, a win for the favourites seemed inevitable.

However, simply two minutes later, Ragnar Sigurðsson equalised after an extended throw earlier than Kolbeinn Sigþórsson’s squirmed the ball previous Joe Hart and in.

Iceland led within the nineteenth minute and held out till the tip to say a well-known victory.

The Iceland gamers, workers and followers performing the now iconic thunder clap within the French Riviera won’t ever be forgotten.

Iceland went on to misplaced 5-2 to hosts France within the quarter-finals however that this simply highlights how wonderful it was that they toppled England.

Everybody loves a fairytale story and this was actually probably the greatest, meriting its place on this record.

11: Croatia 1-1 Turkey: Euro 2008 Quarter-final

One of the thrilling, if forgotten matches ever to happen at a Euro occurred at Ernst-Happel-Stadion in Vienna in 2008 on the quarter-final stage.

Croatia had certified for Austria/Switzerland ’08 by knocking out England in qualifying, a well-known remaining day 3-2 victory at Wembley the spotlight.

Slaven Bilić’s aspect then, considerably surprisingly, topped Group B above Germany, Austria and Poland, successful all three group video games.

Turkey in the meantime misplaced their group opener, 2-0 to Portugal, however bounced again by beating the Swiss 2-1 and Czech Republic 3-2 to sneak by.

That latter an incredible win, through which they had been 2-0 down, with Nihat Kahveci scoring twice within the remaining three minutes to ship them by.

However the drama was simply getting began.

So, on this final eight encounter, 118 minutes had been performed and no targets had been scored: not that thrilling I hear you say.

Properly, within the 119th minute, Ivan Klasnić places Croatia in entrance and so they suppose a semi-final spot is unquestionably their’s.

However, within the 122nd minute, Rüştü Reçber punts the ball ahead, there’s a little bit of a scramble within the field and Semih Şentürk smashes in an equaliser for Turkey.

That’s the newest aim ever scored in European Championship historical past and what an essential one it turned out to be.

Thus, penalties are required.

Within the shootout, Arda Turan, Şentürk and Hamit Altıntop all rating whereas Luka Modrić, Ivan Rakitić and Mladen Petrić are all denied as Turkey progress.

Turkey then misplaced an exhilarating semi-final, 3-2 to Germany at St. Jakob-Park, however extra drama like this quarter-final at Euro 2020 would get followers throughout the globe of their seats.

10: Germany 1-1 England: Euro 1996 Semi-final

An iconic European Championships evening if not a really completely happy one from an England perspective.

Euro ’96 was all about exhibiting the world that English soccer was again and was the perfect there was on the market.

England hadn’t gained any main silverware since lifting the World Cup, at Wembley, in opposition to Germany 30 years earlier.

Regardless of a gap day draw with Switzerland, Terry Venables’ aspect bounced again to prime Group A, beating Scotland after which hammering Netherlands.

They then gained a nerve-shredding penalty shootout in opposition to Spain within the quarter-finals; the primary time the Three Lions had ever gained a shootout.

This arrange a semi-final in opposition to previous foes Germany.

Die Mannschaft had cruised by the match up till this level, amassing seven factors within the group in opposition to Czech Republic, Italy and Russia earlier than overcoming Croatia within the final eight.

This was a primary aggressive assembly of the 2 nations since they met within the Italia ’90 semi-finals when Germany gained a penalty shootout in Turin.

Alan Shearer and Stefan Kuntz traded early targets on this one however that’s not the one iconic second that lives lengthy within the reminiscence.

The match went to additional time and, with the golden aim rule in place, only one aim and it will be over.

Late on within the extra interval, a well-worked England transfer noticed the ball switched out to Shearer on the fitting who performed the ball throughout just for Paul Gascoigne to be millimetres away from a faucet in, stretching with all his may to the touch it.

The tie completed 1-1 so went to penalties and this produced the same old consequence.

Germany progressed to the ultimate, which they’d win, with Gareth Southgate the one man to overlook.

1996 was, in some ways, the summer time soccer got here house though the trophy, as most worldwide honours typically do, discovered itself in German palms.

9: Germany 1-2 Italy: Euro 2012 Semi-final

It is a aim that may typically be forgotten when discussing the pantheon of nice Euro moments.

However, it actually deserves a spot on this record.

At Euro 2012, Germany had been amongst the favourites to raise the trophy in Kyiv.

They’d gained all three group video games, topping the group of dying above Portugal, Netherlands and Denmark, earlier than hammering Greece 4-2 within the quarter-finals.

Italy in the meantime snuck out of Group C with 5 factors, solely beating a hopeless Republic of Eire, earlier than needing a penalty shootout to beat England.

So, going into this semi-final at Stadion Narodowy in Warsaw, it’s truthful to say the Germans had been crimson scorching favourites.

Nonetheless, it didn’t pan out that manner.

Mario Balotelli’s brace helped Gli Azzuri to a 2-1 victory that was much more complete then the scoreline suggests; Germany’s aim was a 92nd minute penalty from Mesut Özil.

Balotelli, solely 22 years previous at this level, opened the scoring with a bullet header from an Antonio Cassano cross nevertheless it was his second aim that’ll be eternally remembered.

Riccardo Montolivo performs little greater than a hopeful ball excessive and, with Philipp Lahm flailing to get again, Balotelli hammers the ball previous Manuel Neuer, the world’s greatest goalkeeper.

Essentially the most iconic half is the celebration as Balotelli tosses his shirt apart to disclose a high-quality physic; the last word flex.

Italy then misplaced the ultimate, 4-0 to Spain, however this victory over enemies Germany options an iconic second.

8: France 3-2 Portugal: Euro 1984 Semi-final

For this iconic second, you’ll want to show the dial a bit additional again on the time machine, again to 1984 to be valuable.

No this second didn’t happen in a George Orwell novel, extra that summer time’s European Championship semi-final.

France had been the hosts, staging a significant competitors for the primary time because the inaugural Euros had been performed 24 years earlier.

At this level, Les Bleus had by no means gained a significant competitors, dropping in semi-finals in 1958, 1960 and 1982.

So, this competitors was all about Michel Hidalgo’s aspect delivering success.

It was all going properly for France within the group stage the place they gained all three matches, scoring 9 and conceding simply two in opposition to Denmark, Belgium and Yugoslavia.

However, on this iconic semi-final in Marseille, they discovered Portugal a harder nut to crack.

Jean-François Domergue put the hosts forward however a Rui Jordão brace, the second of which was early in additional time, had them getting ready to elimination.

Domergue equalised within the 114th minute however the recreation seemed destine to go to penalties.

That’s till, within the remaining minute; Jean Tigana’s cross from the fitting discovered Michel Platini within the centre, he steadied himself and fired within the winner.

Platini, arguably the best participant of his era, cementing his place as such.

He’d go onto rating within the remaining, his ninth aim in simply 5 appearances at this match, as France beat Spain 2-0 to win their first ever trophy.

France have had, and presently have, some extraordinary footballers however Platini is a part of the crème de la crème and this was his crowning second.

7: France 0-1 Portugal: Euro 2016 Remaining

Staying in France, however quick forwarding 30 years, that is one other conflict between France and Portugal.

As was the case in 1986, France hosted the European Championships and this introduced with it big expectations that they had been going to win the competitors.

Since reaching the World Cup Remaining a decade earlier, les Bleus had gone out within the group stage of Euro 2008 and World Cup 2010 earlier than reaching the quarter-finals in 2012 and 2014.

However, Didier Deschamps boasted a star-studded squad that includes N’Golo Kanté, Paul Pogba, Dimitri Payet and Antoine Griezmann.

This expertise was on present as France topped Group A with seven factors earlier than beating Republic of Eire and Iceland within the knockout part.

They then beat reigning world champions Germany 2-0 within the semi-finals at Stade Vélodrome; Griezmann with a brace on an iconic evening of its personal.

So, going into their remaining at Stade de France, the house group had been overwhelming favourites.

That’s as a result of, in distinction, Portugal had seemingly obtained to the ultimate by mistake.

Fernando Santos’ aspect hadn’t gained any of their group video games, solely getting by as probably the greatest ranked third-placed groups, earlier than beating Croatia in additional time and Poland on penalties.

Their solely win in 90 minutes in truth was within the semi-finals, a 2-0 win over shock package deal Wales at Parc Olympique Lyonnais.

Then, within the remaining, talismanic captain Cristiano Ronaldo hobbled off with an harm after simply 25 minutes.

André-Pierre Gignac missed France’s greatest probability in regular time as the sport went to an extra half hour.

19 minutes into this additional 30, substitute Eder tried an extended vary shot that arrowed previous Hugo Lloris, a lot to the shock of the house crowd.

That was sufficient to see Portugal raise their first main silverware; a little bit of retribution for 30 years earlier maybe.

Eder ensured he’ll at all times be a legend in Portugal and the then Lille striker was most likely sensible to go away Northern France for Lokomotiv Moscow shortly after.

6: Denmark 2-0 Germany: Euro 1992 Remaining

Earlier than any main match newspaper columnists, pundits and supporters all world wide will debate who’s going to win the competitors.

More often than not, it’s unimaginable to foretell however one factor is definite, it’ll be one of many groups who’ve certified proper?

Properly, that was not the case 29 years in the past.

Forward of Euro 1992, eight international locations had been getting ready to journey Sweden however Denmark weren’t one among them having completed second in qualifying Group 4.

Nonetheless, they obtained the decision on the eleventh hour.

The winners of that group, Yugoslavia, had been banned on 30 Could 1992 by the UN after the outbreak of civil struggle.

With membership seasons over, Danish gamers had been on vacation however had been known as collectively simply 10 days earlier than the match kicked off.

This didn’t embrace star man Michael Laudrup who rated Denmark’s possibilities of success so low he opted to remain on vacation,

On account of this, they began slowly, drawing 0-0 with England after which dropping 1-0 to the hosts at Råsunda.

However, within the remaining group recreation, they snuck by to the semi-finals, beating France 2-1 in Malmö with Lars Elstrup scoring a late winner.

There, they confronted reigning and defending champions Netherlands in Göteborg and Retailer Larsen’s braced helped the tie to a penalty shootout.

Celebrity goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel saved Marco van Basten’s spot-kick and Denmark, in opposition to the chances, reached the ultimate.

The particular iconic second, after all, happened on this remaining.

Simply 18 minutes in, Brøndby midfielder John Jensen smashed a shot into the highest nook from lengthy vary; Bodo Illgner had no probability.

He would go onto signal for Arsenal that summer time however solely scored as soon as in 118 video games for the Gunners, doing so in opposition to QPR, with followers satirically signing “I used to be there when Jensen scored”.

Nonetheless, he was the hero that day with Kim Vilfort securing the victory with a late aim in off the put up within the second half.

Within the area of 27 days, Denmark went from having did not qualify to European Champions, all with out their greatest participant who was on the seaside someplace.

Scenes like this can, most likely, by no means be replicated ever once more.

5: Germany 0-1 Spain: Euro 2008 Remaining

The highest 5 iconic moments on this record all happened in finals and, for this one particularly, it’s the ultimate of 2008.

Spain and Germany had been the 2 excellent sides at Euro 2008 so, fittingly, they met within the remaining at a packed to the rafters Ernst-Happel-Stadion.

La Roja had wanted penalties to beat Italy within the quarters earlier than hammering Russia 3-0 within the final 4.

Die Mannschaft in the meantime had been concerned in two thrilling 3-2 victories, first over Portugal after which in opposition to Turkey, each at St. Jakob-Park.

So, Vienna performed host to 2 groups filled with superstars.

Not like the 2 semi-finals, this one witnessed only a solitary aim.

It got here within the thirty third minute when Xavi performed a trademark through-ball to Fernando Torres, on the peak of his powers, who pocked the ball previous Jens Lehmann.

That was the one aim as Luis Aragonés’ aspect claimed Spain’s first trophy since Euro ’64.

They might after all go on to retain their title in Kyiv 4 years later, with the small matter of a World Cup triumph in between.

Spain would go onto be essentially the most dominant nationwide group in trendy occasions and this was simply the beginning.

They’d come alongside manner in a really quick time period.

Aragonés’ aspect began qualifying with a 3-2 defeat in Belfast to Northern Eire, instantly after which iconic gamers reminiscent of Raúl had been dropped.

As an alternative, Aragonés favoured technical midfielders, Xavi, Andrés Iniesta, David Silva and Cesc Fàbregas and this type of participant lit-up Euro 2008 and would dominant soccer for a few years after.

Even with an incredible midfield, they wanted somebody to place the ball within the web and Torres actually did that with this wonderful second.

4: Soviet Union 0-1 Netherlands: Euro 1988 Remaining

Regardless of the passing of 33 years, this stays the perfect aim ever scored at a European Championships and that alone warrants its place as one of the crucial iconic moments.

Netherlands, underneath legendary coach Rinus Michels, had been unimaginable at Euro ’88 taking part in their iconic model of Complete Soccer.

To get to the ultimate, Oranje beat Republic of Eire, England after which hosts and fierce rivals West Germany within the semis.

At Olympiastadion, they met Soviet Union, the aspect who’d overwhelmed them 1-0 within the group part.

This time, Holland made no mistake, taking a primary half lead by Ruud Gullit.

However, it’s the second of the 2 aim that’s so iconic.

Marco van Basten’s wonderful volley, from such a good angle, stays probably the greatest targets ever scored however to do it in a victorious Euro Remaining is what makes it so particular.

Nonetheless, to at the present time, any volley scored wherever is in comparison with van Basten’s strike with this aim the benchmark for excellent volleys, even after over three many years.

3: Czechoslovakia 2-2 West Germany: Euro 1976 Remaining

What speaking about historic soccer moments, not simply from the European Championships, Antonín Panenka’s contribution to the gorgeous recreation won’t ever be forgotten.

That is the oldest occasion on this record however that solely provides to its pertinence.

The 12 months is 1976 and the fifth iteration of the European Championships are going down in Yugoslavia.

Simply 4 groups certified again then however, between them, they produced two thrilling semi-finals.

First, Czechoslovakia beat Netherlands 3-1 after additional time earlier than, 24 hours later, the hosts had been overwhelmed 4-2 by West Germany, additionally after additional time; Dieter Müller with a hat-trick.

Within the remaining itself in Belgrade, Czechoslovakia raced right into a 2-0 lead, Ján Švehlík and Karol Dobiaš scoring, however strikes from Müller after which Bernd Hölzenbein compelled additional time after which penalties.

This was the primary penalty shootout in Euro historical past with, for instance at Euro ’68, Italy successful the semi-final after a coin toss earlier than successful a remaining replay.

The primary seven penalties had been all transformed however Uli Hoeneß was denied, that means Antonín Panenka had the prospect to win it for Czechoslovakia.

Moderately than getting his head down and hitting it as arduous as he might, the norm in these days, Panenka delicately chipped the ball down the center with Sepp Maier helplessly diving out the best way to his left.

Panenka lends his identify to this ability to at the present time, that means his exploits in serving to his nation win Euro ’76 will at all times be remembered.

2: France 2-1 Italy: Euro 2000 Remaining

Euro 2000 was the primary to be co-hosted by two nations with Netherlands taking part in host the match alongside neighbours Belgium.

Two years earlier, France had gained their first World Cup title, beating Brazil on house soil 3-0 within the remaining; Zinedine Zidane with a brace.

Regardless of being reigning world champions, this France group, now underneath Roger Lemerre, was much more vibrant and thrilling.

They gained their first two group video games, then dropping a dead-rubber to Netherlands, earlier than beating Spain after which Portugal within the knockout part.

Within the latter, Thierry Henry equalised earlier than Zidane gained the tie with a 117th minute golden aim.

Golden targets had been actually the theme of this match because it was the second and remaining Euros to be performed underneath this technique.

So, Les Bleus reached the ultimate the place they’d face the opposite blues, Gli Azzurri, Italy in Rotterdam.

Marco Delvecchio put the Italians in entrance early within the second half and that seemed prefer it was going to be sufficient to see them declare their first silverware for 18 years.

However, within the third minute of added on time, Sylvain Wiltord raced clear and poked the ball previous Francesco Toldo to drive additional time.

Within the extra half hour, David Trezeguet’s beautiful volley within the 103rd minute noticed France declare the trophy there after which in essentially the most dramatic of circumstances.

France would go onto win two Confederations Cups after this earlier than assembly Italy once more within the 2006 World Cup Remaining which they misplaced on penalties.

Nonetheless, this was once they had been on the peak of their powers with such a quick, thrilling, attacking aspect so to win the Euros on this style makes it an iconic second.

1: Portugal 0-1 Greece: Euro 2004 Remaining

Everybody loves an underdog story.

Leicester Metropolis successful the Premier League or maybe Wimbledon successful the FA Cup could also be your footballing go-to in that regard.

No matter sporting underdog victory you’ll be able to consider, not many examine with Greece in 2004.

Going into Euro 2004, Greece had solely ever certified for 2 main tournaments: Euro 1980 and USA ’94, at each, mixed, they’d amassed only one level.

So, when the group stage draw was made, they had been ranked 15 out of the 16 finalists, solely Latvia had been beneath them.

Regardless of this, they triggered an enormous upset by beating hosts Portugal 2-1 within the match opener at Estádio do Dragão; Giorgos Karagounis and Angelos Basinas scoring.

Nonetheless, they might then solely draw with Spain and had been overwhelmed by Russia so solely snuck by to the knockout part above the Spanish on targets scored.

Thus, that victory over the Portuguese was written off as a fluke and Greece got no probability as they took on defending champions France at Estádio José Alvalade.

However, of their trademark smash-and-grab defensive type, Otto Rehhagel’s aspect dumped out the aspect who’d gained World Cup ’98 and Euro 2000.

Within the semis, they performed out a 0-0 draw with Czech Republic earlier than getting by through a silver aim, scored by Traianos Dellas simply seconds earlier than half time of additional time.

So, within the remaining, 22 days after they kicked off the match collectively, Portugal and Greece met as soon as once more.

The enduring second going to primary on this record got here within the 57th minute; Angelos Basinas’ nook was headed in by Angelos Charisteas from shut vary.

That may show to be the one aim in Greece’s third successive 1-0 victory as they lifted the trophy, a lot to the dismay of the house crowd in Lisbon.

Euro 2020 would be the sixteenth staging of the European Champions and, the earlier 15, have been gained by ten completely different nations.

Nonetheless, none have been extra a shock than Greece in 2004 and that’ll take some beating in any worldwide competitors.

This text was edited by
Benjamin Newman.

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