The UEFA European Football Championship, commonly known as the UEFA Euro, is one of the most prestigious and followed competitions in international football.

Organized by UEFA, the event takes place every four years and features the best national teams in Europe. Since its inception in 1960, the tournament has seen moments of glory, surprises, and outstanding performances from both teams and players.

The European Championship

The tournament began as a competition among a few countries, but over the years it has grown both in participation and popularity. The first edition, held in France in 1960, saw the Soviet Union emerge victorious. Since then, the format and number of participating teams have evolved, with the tournament expanding to 24 teams in the finals from 2016 onwards.

Germany and Spain are the most successful nations in the tournament’s history, each with three titles. Italy and France have also left a significant mark with two titles each. The tournament has also witnessed major upsets, such as Denmark’s victory in 1992 and Greece’s triumph in 2004.

Euro 2024: A New Chapter

Where Euro 2024 Will Be Held

Euro 2024 will be hosted by Germany, a nation with a rich football history and a strong connection to the European Championship. This will be the second time Germany has hosted the tournament, the first being in 1988 when West Germany was the host nation.

Venues and Stadiums

The matches of Euro 2024 will be played in ten German cities, each boasting modern, high-capacity stadiums. The host cities include:

  • Berlin (Olympiastadion)
  • Munich (Allianz Arena)
  • Dortmund (Signal Iduna Park)
  • Leipzig (Red Bull Arena)
  • Stuttgart (Mercedes-Benz Arena)
  • Hamburg (Volksparkstadion)
  • Düsseldorf (Merkur Spiel-Arena)
  • Cologne (RheinEnergieStadion)
  • Frankfurt (Deutsche Bank Park)
  • Gelsenkirchen (Veltins-Arena)

The Final

The final of the tournament will be held at the Olympiastadion in Berlin, an iconic venue that has hosted numerous major sporting events, including the 2006 FIFA World Cup Final. With a capacity of approximately 74,000 spectators, the Olympiastadion will provide the perfect stage for one of the most anticipated events in the football calendar.

Expectations and Preparations

With Germany as the host nation, expectations are high for an impeccably organized tournament and an electrifying atmosphere. Known for its efficiency and passion for football, Germany will attract both local fans and international visitors, creating an unforgettable environment. Teams are preparing intensely, with qualifying matches already proving to be highly competitive.

The Road to Glory

The teams participating in Euro 2024 are going through the qualifying rounds with great determination. European national teams are showcasing young talents and experienced veterans, all eager to make their mark in the competition. The qualifying matches are already delivering thrills, with surprises and confirmations shaping a competitive and unpredictable landscape.

Euro 2024 promises to be a spectacular tournament, featuring the best European teams in one of the most football-passionate countries in the world. The competition will not only celebrate football talent but also the unity and cultural diversity of the European continent. Fans around the world eagerly await the start of the tournament, ready to experience new emotions and write a new chapter in the history of the UEFA European Football Championship.

UEFA Euro Winners 1960-2020

2020: Italy

Euro 2020 was unique, held across multiple cities due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The final took place at Wembley Stadium in London, where Italy defeated England 3-2 on penalties after a 1-1 draw.

This victory marked Italy’s resurgence on the international stage. Cristiano Ronaldo and Patrik Schick were the top scorers with five goals each.

  • Host: Various cities (11 cities)
  • Final: Italy 1-1 England (3-2 penalties)
  • Semi-finalists: Spain, Denmark
  • Top Scorer: Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal), Patrik Schick (Czech Republic) – 5 goals

2016: Portugal

Portugal won their first major tournament at Euro 2016, hosted by France. Portugal defeated the host nation 1-0 in extra time in the final, with Eder scoring the winning goal.

Despite losing their star player Cristiano Ronaldo to injury early in the match, Portugal’s resilience and tactical discipline saw them through. Antoine Griezmann of France was the top scorer with six goals.

  • Host: France
  • Final: Portugal 1-0 France (extra time)
  • Semi-finalists: Germany, Wales
  • Top Scorer: Antoine Griezmann (France) – 6 goals

2012: Spain

Spain defended their title in Euro 2012, held in Poland and Ukraine, becoming the first team to win back-to-back European Championships. Spain defeated Italy 4-0 in the final in Kiev, the largest margin of victory in a Euro final.

The Spanish team’s dominance was evident, with their fluid passing and strong defensive play. Fernando Torres was the top scorer with three goals.

  • Hosts: Poland, Ukraine
  • Final: Spain 4-0 Italy
  • Semi-finalists: Germany, Portugal
  • Top Scorer: Fernando Torres (Spain) – 3 goals

2008: Spain

Spain defended their title in Euro 2012, held in Poland and Ukraine, becoming the first team to win back-to-back European Championships. Spain defeated Italy 4-0 in the final in Kiev, the largest margin of victory in a Euro final.

The Spanish team’s dominance was evident, with their fluid passing and strong defensive play. Fernando Torres was the top scorer with three goals.

  • Hosts: Austria, Switzerland
  • Final: Spain 1-0 Germany
  • Semi-finalists: Russia, Turkey
  • Top Scorer: David Villa (Spain) – 4 goals

2004: Greece

The 2004 tournament in Portugal saw one of the biggest surprises in European Championship history, with Greece winning their first title. Greece defeated host nation Portugal 1-0 in the final in Lisbon, with a goal from Angelos Charisteas.

Under coach Otto Rehhagel, Greece’s disciplined and defensive strategy proved effective against more favored teams. Milan Baroš of the Czech Republic was the top scorer with five goals.

  • Host: Portugal
  • Final: Greece 1-0 Portugal
  • Semi-finalists: Czech Republic, Netherlands
  • Top Scorer: Milan Baroš (Czech Republic) – 5 goals

2000: France

Euro 2000 was co-hosted by Belgium and the Netherlands, featuring thrilling matches and high-scoring games. France won their second European Championship by defeating Italy 2-1 in the final, with David Trezeguet scoring the Golden Goal.

The tournament showcased the attacking prowess of teams and the emergence of new talents. Patrick Kluivert and Savo Milošević were the top scorers with five goals each.

  • Hosts: Belgium, Netherlands
  • Final: France 2-1 Italy (extra time)
  • Semi-finalists: Portugal, Netherlands
  • Top Scorers: Patrick Kluivert (Netherlands), Savo Milošević (Yugoslavia) – 5 goals

1996: Germany

The 1996 tournament in England expanded to include 16 teams and introduced the “Golden Goal” rule. Germany won their third European Championship by defeating the Czech Republic 2-1 in the final at Wembley Stadium, with Oliver Bierhoff scoring the first-ever Golden Goal in a major tournament.

This edition was memorable for its competitive matches and enthusiastic crowds. Alan Shearer of England was the top scorer with five goals.

  • Host: England
  • Final: Germany 2-1 Czech Republic (golden goal)
  • Semi-finalists: France, England
  • Top Scorer: Alan Shearer (England) – 5 goals

1992: Denmark

The 1992 European Championship in Sweden was marked by Denmark’s fairy tale victory. Initially not qualified, Denmark replaced Yugoslavia and went on to win the tournament, defeating Germany 2-0 in the final. Peter Schmeichel’s goalkeeping and John Jensen’s opening goal were key factors in Denmark’s success.

The Danish team’s triumph was a remarkable underdog story, showcasing teamwork and determination. Henrik Larsen, Karl-Heinz Riedle, and Dennis Bergkamp were the top scorers with three goals each.

  • Host: Sweden
  • Final: Denmark 2-0 Germany
  • Semi-finalists: Netherlands, Sweden
  • Top Scorers: Henrik Larsen (Denmark), Karl-Heinz Riedle (Germany), Dennis Bergkamp (Netherlands) – 3 goals

1988: Netherlands

West Germany hosted the 1988 tournament, where the Netherlands won their first major title. The Dutch team, led by coach Rinus Michels and featuring stars like Ruud Gullit and Marco van Basten, defeated the Soviet Union 2-0 in the final in Munich.

Van Basten’s spectacular volley in the final is considered one of the greatest goals in European Championship history. The Netherlands’ victory highlighted their tactical innovation and technical excellence.

  • Host: West Germany
  • Final: Netherlands 2-0 USSR
  • Semi-finalists: West Germany, Italy
  • Top Scorer: Marco van Basten (Netherlands) – 5 goals

1984: France

France hosted and won the 1984 European Championship, driven by the exceptional performance of Michel Platini. Platini scored nine goals, including a goal in the final where France defeated Spain 2-0 in Paris.

This tournament was significant for its exciting matches and the attacking style of football exhibited by the French team. Platini’s leadership and scoring prowess were crucial to France’s success.

  • Host: France
  • Final: France 2-0 Spain
  • Semi-finalists: Denmark, Portugal
  • Top Scorer: Michel Platini (France) – 9 goals

1980: West Germany

The 1980 tournament in Italy saw the introduction of a group stage format, with eight teams competing. West Germany claimed their second title by defeating Belgium 2-1 in the final in Rome. Horst Hrubesch scored both goals for West Germany.

The tournament also featured a third-place playoff, where Czechoslovakia defeated Italy on penalties. Klaus Allofs of West Germany was the top scorer with three goals.

  • Host: Italy
  • Final: West Germany 2-1 Belgium
  • Third place: Czechoslovakia 1-1 Italy (9-8 penalties)
  • Top Scorer: Klaus Allofs (West Germany) – 3 goals

1976: Czechoslovakia

Yugoslavia hosted the 1976 European Championship, remembered for one of the most dramatic finals in history. Czechoslovakia defeated West Germany in a penalty shootout after a 2-2 draw.

The final, held in Belgrade, saw Antonín Panenka famously scoring the winning penalty with a chipped shot.

This victory was a remarkable achievement for Czechoslovakia, showcasing their resilience and strategic gameplay. Dieter Müller of West Germany was the top scorer with four goals.

  • Host: Yugoslavia
  • Final: Czechoslovakia 2-2 West Germany (5-3 penalties)
  • Third place: Netherlands 3-2 Yugoslavia (extra time)
  • Top Scorer: Dieter Müller (West Germany) – 4 goals

1972: West Germany

The 1972 tournament took place in Belgium, and West Germany emerged as the champions by defeating the Soviet Union 3-0 in the final held in Brussels. West Germany’s dominance was evident throughout the tournament, with Gerd Müller scoring twice in the final and becoming the top scorer with four goals.

The German team’s blend of physical strength, tactical discipline, and technical skill set a new standard in European football.

  • Host: Belgium
  • Final: West Germany 3-0 USSR
  • Third place: Belgium 2-1 Hungary
  • Top Scorer: Gerd Müller (West Germany) – 4 goals

1968: Italy

Italy hosted the 1968 European Championship, which introduced a new format, including a semi-final stage. The final was contested between Italy and Yugoslavia, ending in a 1-1 draw after extra time.

A replay was held, where Italy won 2-0, thanks to goals from Luigi Riva and Pietro Anastasi.

This edition was notable for a controversial coin toss that decided Italy’s advancement to the final after a drawn semi-final against the Soviet Union. Dragan Džajić of Yugoslavia was the tournament’s top scorer.

  • Host: Italy
  • Final: Italy 1-1 Yugoslavia (extra time), 2-0 (replay)
  • Third place: England 2-0 USSR
  • Top Scorer: Dragan Džajić (Yugoslavia) – 2 goals

1964: Spain

The 1964 tournament was hosted by Spain, which also emerged as the winner. Spain defeated the Soviet Union 2-1 in the final at Santiago Bernabéu Stadium in Madrid. This edition featured an expanded qualification phase with 29 teams. Jesús María Pereda and Marcelino Martínez scored for Spain in the final, securing their victory against the defending champions.

The tournament highlighted Spain’s tactical improvements and the emergence of new footballing talents in Europe.

  • Host: Spain
  • Final: Spain 2-1 USSR
  • Third place: Hungary 3-1 Denmark (extra time)
  • Top Scorers: Dezső Novák (Hungary), Ferenc Bene (Hungary), Jesús María Pereda (Spain) – 2 goals

1960: USSR

The first European Championship was held in France, with only four teams reaching the finals: France, Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia, and the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union won the inaugural tournament by defeating Yugoslavia 2-1 in extra time in the final. The match was held at the Parc des Princes in Paris.

The Soviet team, led by goalkeeper Lev Yashin, showcased their strength and tactical prowess. Valentin Ivanov and Viktor Ponedelnik were among the tournament’s top scorers, each contributing significantly to their team’s success.

  • Host: France
  • Final: Soviet Union 2-1 Yugoslavia (extra time)
  • Third place: Czechoslovakia 2-0 France
  • Top Scorers: Valentin Ivanov (Soviet Union), Viktor Ponedelnik (Soviet Union) – 4 goals

Summary of Titles Won

  1. Germany: 3 titles (1972, 1980, 1996)
  2. Spain: 3 titles (1964, 2008, 2012)
  3. France: 2 titles (1984, 2000)
  4. Italy: 2 titles (1968, 2020)
  5. Soviet Union: 1 title (1960)
  6. Czechoslovakia: 1 title (1976)
  7. Netherlands: 1 title (1988)
  8. Denmark: 1 title (1992)
  9. Greece: 1 title (2004)
  10. Portugal: 1 title (2016)