The Greatest Ever Shocks In The Euros…
This year’s Euros was originally due to take place today, June 11th. However, the outburst of Coronavirus means that football fans will have to wait, until next year to watch their respected nations compete for one of international football’s biggest prize. Since football fans are missing out, I thought I’d keep you entertained. Here are five matches that shocked the world in previous tournaments.
Portugal 0:1 Greece- Euro 2004 Final:
Having already met in the group stages, Portugal were looking to avenge their defeat to Greece.
This was Portugal’s “golden generation.” They had the likes of; Luís Figo, Rui Costa, Deco and Cristiano Ronaldo. Luiz Felipe Scolari’s Portugal were the hosts, it was, in their hands.
Having just edged the Netherlands in the semi-final, Portugal could almost taste victory. Over 62,000 packed in the iconic Estádio da Luz, all screaming for Portugal. The hosts were on the verge of becoming the second team ever to win the Euros on home soil.
Otto Rehhagel’s Greece were huge underdogs, but his defensive-minded tactics got Greece to the final, anything was possible.
With both sides having chances, on 57th minute, Greece did the unthinkable. Angelos Basinas swung over a corner, and Angelos Charisteas climbed above Costinha to head in from close range. The Greek Gods themselves couldn’t have predicted this.
Greece held on for what is arguably the biggest upset in Euro history.
Denmark 2:0 Germany- Euro ’92 Final:
Here’s what was crazy. Denmark never qualified for the Euros that year. They were asked to compete as Yugoslavia were disqualified, due to the Yugoslav wars.
The Dane’s advanced to the semi-finals after finishing second in the group. They beat France and drew to England, before facing the Netherlands in the semi-final.
Being huge underdogs against the Netherlands, Denmark took the game to penalties, following a 2:2 draw. They won 5:4 on penalties, with Kim Christofte scoring the decisive kick.
With no one giving them a chance in the final, goals from John Jensen and Kim Vilfort ensured a historic 2:0 victory over the Germans in the final.
Denmark didn’t have world-class talent, compared to the big nations, but they had the chemistry and the determination to succeed as a team.
England 1:2 Iceland- Round of Sixteen- Euro 2016:
After a disappointing run in the group stages, drawing to Slovakia and Russia and narrowly beating Wales, Roy Hodgson’s men had a big chance to proceed to the quarter-finals.
Iceland were the underdogs of this competition. After an impressive group-stage, drawing to Portugal and Hungary, and a 94th-minute winner against Austria secured their spot in the round of sixteen.
Even though England had a poor opening three games, they were huge favourites going into this, but never say never.
An early Wayne Rooney penalty gave England, but Iceland responded quickly. Their infamous long-throw caused problems for England, at the back, allowing Ragnar Sigurðsson to score past Hart. Moments later, Kolbeinn Sigþórsson scored to secure the win, and send the Icelandic faithful into dreamland.
Immediately after the game, Hodgson resigned. That’s how embarrassing it was.
Latvia 0:0 Germany- Group Stage- Euro 2004:
With the likes of; Kahn, Schweinsteiger, Klose and Ballack within their squad, this was a team that could win the tournament. The Latvian’s lost to the Czech Republic on matchday one, with the Germans drawing to the Dutch.
This was a perfect game for the Germans to get back to winning ways, right?
The German’s started bright, but the Latvian’s defence was on-point, frustrating Germany throughout the game. It could’ve been so much better for Latvia, with Maris Verpakovskis causing havoc for the Germans, at times.
Latvia managed to hold on for a historic draw. The Germans never made it out of the group that year.
The great Rudi Voller had some experienced and talented players, within his ranks, that year. After a disappointing campaign, Voller resigned from his position as Germany manager.
Czech Republic 2:1 Italy- Group Stage- Euro ’96:
After losing the World Cup final, on penalties, two years before, Italy was desperate for redemption. Going into the ’96 tournament, Italy and Germany were favourites to progress in Group C.
Germany and Italy beat the Czech Republic and Russia, respectively, in the opening game.
Gianfranco Zola, Pierluigi Casiraghi, Enrico Chiesa and Alessandro Del Piero were surely going to be too much for the Czech’s.
A young Pavel Nedved gave the Czech Republic the lead. Not long after, Enrico Chiesa equalised. However, a 35th-minute winner from Radek Bejbl ensured defeat for the Italians, who had to play the majority of the game with ten men.
Arrigo Sacchi’s men had to beat Germany in the final game. Zola’s penalty miss meant that Italy had to settle for a 0:0 draw and they went on to finish third.
We hope you enjoyed the article ‘The Greatest Ever Shocks In The Euros.’ Do you agree with these matches? With many great upsets in the Euros, which game has shocked you the most? Leave your thoughts down below.
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