Euro 2020: Five things we learned from the tournament
|Danish players protect Eriksen after his fall in their tournament opener against Finland. (Photo credit: UEFA.com)|
The highly anticipated Euro 2020 has come to an end and it lived up to the hype, it was worth throwing pints on the face of the virus if you could see it, it got nothing on us all as football prevailed, but what did we learn from the tournament? Here are five of the lot.
5. Age is just a number
The neutrals and everyone with an alliance with the Queen licked lips at the prospect of the youthful England side running against the ageing duo of Georgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci, but experience said otherwise at the end of the day.
Yes it could have been different if Gareth Southgate was brave but that’s a different story.
The defensive partnership delivered the goods and we all saw how 36-year-old Cristiano Ronaldo ran down defences and picked up the golden boot. Age, as we’ve come to know it, is nothing but a number in football.
4. England should fire Southgate
There’s no bad blood, no sentiments or emotions, Gareth Southgate isn’t good enough and we have to stop sugarcoating it.
He’s probably in good books for some top FA folks, but for the greater good, he should be fired with reckless abandon.
England had the finals to lose and he lost it with negative team selection and poor game management.
We will talk about the penalties later, but how did he decide to consecutively remove substitutes? First with Grealish and then with Henderson. Come on FA, do what you have to do!
3. It is time for Didier Deschamps to step aside
It was probably shocking that Joachim Low stepped aside from the German national team in the wake of poor results.
France should do the same with Didier Deschamps and the earlier they do the best for the entire team and nation.
You quit when the ovation is loudest.
Deschamps’ name will forever be written in gold in the context of football in France, but if he doesn’t want to downgrade to bronze or worse, he has to leave now.
The Euros showed why and does anyone need further reasons?
2. Belgium isn’t all that
They’re world number one, at least as at today, but why can’t they impose themselves on everyone else?
Why do they continue to appear inferior to nations they should boss around with the talent available to Roberto Martinez?
Belgium aren’t all that to be honest and we must now begin to question the credibility of Martinez and his rich backroom staff that includes a certain Arsenal legend.
Belgium crashed out at the quarter final stage of the Euros for the second tournament in a row and while we can say Italy was the better team on the day, why do they get bullied by teams when it matters?
Romelu Lukaku, Kevin De Bruyne, Eden Hazard and a host of names couldn’t see them through Italy. The next World Cup is the next hurray for them. Will they measure up?
1. Humanity won at Euro 2020
When Cristian Eriksen crashed to the ground with a few minutes left on the watch in the first half against Finland in their tournament opener, we saw the value of togetherness, and for once, three points didn’t matter and it was all about life.
The way the Danish players protected one of their own from the cameras and eyes of the world, the strength they mustered to continue, even in defeat and the courage to pick up and reach the semifinals despite how hard it was, deserves a mention.
Football is beautiful and every player in the Danish contingent deserves a national award. recognize them, they are the heroes of the tournament.