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Opinion

Euro 2020 excitement is building

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Roar Rookie
5 days ago
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Not much can quite compare to the electrifying competition that a major international footballing tournament can bring.

In June 2020, the UEFA European Championships will kick off in what will be the first pan-European tournament in the competition’s history. In a UEFA Euro first, there will be no individual host nation.

The cities that will host continental football’s largest contest include Amsterdam, Baku, Bilbao, Bucharest, Budapest, Copenhagen, Dublin, Glasgow, London, Munich, Rome and Saint Petersburg, with the semi-finals and final being held at Wembley.

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Football fans will be gifted four matches each and every day until the conclusion of the tournament’s group stage on June 24. That’s 48 games of Europe’s best battling it out in the group stages alone.

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Once again the tournament’s structure will allow for the four best third-place teams to join the top two from each group in the final 16. This format allowed defending champions Portugal to place third in their group and proceed to win the competition back in 2016.

Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo

(Photo: Reuters)

Six teams have already qualified for the tournament after a brilliant qualification period that saw them concede a total of only two goals collectively. This is a great indication of the high level of football that the tournament is ready to produce.

According to the FIFA World Rankings, these nations, in order, make up the best in Europe: Belgium (Romelu Lukaku, Kevin De Bruyne and Eden Hazard), France (Kylian Mbappe, Antoine Griezmann and Paul Pogba), England (Raheem Sterling, Harry Kane and Jadon Sancho), Portugal (Cristiano Ronaldo, Bernardo Silva and Joao Felix), Croatia (Luka Modric, Ivan Rakitic and Ivan Perisic) and Spain (David De Gea, Marco Asensio and Isco).

Unsurprisingly, these six teams appear in the world’s top eight with only Brazil (third) and Uruguay (fifth) disrupting this order. This illustrates the magnitude of the tournament and how similar the level of football will be to the football’s biggest stage, the FIFA World Cup.

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A great start to the 2019/20 season is only more reason to get excited for what’s ahead.