Most Memorable Moments in the Euros

  • Denmark and Greece caused big surprise with their victories at the Euros
  • Paul Gascoigne’s goal celebration in 1996 has become an iconic moment
  • Van Basten, Ibrahimovic and Panenka all scored legendary goals in the tournament
most memorable moments in the Euros
Image via Flickr

The Czech forward Patrik Schick’s halfway line goal will surely belong to the best moments of this European Championship. Just like his compatriot’s, Antonin Panenka’s penalty against West Germany in 1976. Or the goal celebration of Paul Gascoigne 20 years later which all mentioned in the most memorable moments in the Euros. 

In the 60-year old history of the UEFA European Championship fans could witness several memorable moments from amazing goals to shocking defeats. We are only in the first week of the Euro 2020 but several similar events have already happened. From the shocking collapse of Danish player Christian Eriksen to the record-breaking goals of Cristiano Ronaldo. We might have already witnessed the best goal of the tournament thanks to Patrik Schick, who seems to follow the great tradition of former Czech players. Like Antonin Panenka and Karel Poborsky who both scored amazing goals in the previous tournaments. Let’s see all the magical moments in the history of the Euros.

Most memorable moments in the Euros

5. Surprise victories of Denmark and Greece

As we have already mentioned in our piece of the biggest surprises in the Euros, the victory of Denmark in 1992 was a great moment in the history of European football. The team didn’t even qualify for the tournament. But they were invited instead of the Yugoslavian team two weeks before the start. And if they were there, Denmark went all the way to the final. Where they defeated Germany 2-0. That game must be one of the most memorable moments in the Euros for Danish fans. But surely neutral football lovers are also happy to remember this evening when the underdogs defeated the two-time champions.

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The storyline was very similar 12 years later, in 2004 when Greece won the tournament against all odds. What’s more, they won the final against Portugal who were also the hosts of the event. It was a heartbreak for the home supporters which also meant an unforgettable day for the Greek fans. While most people simply couldn’t believe that the country which only managed to qualify once for the European Championship finished second in their group ahead of Russia and Spain. Then they defeated France, the Czech Republic and finally Portugal. The team including players like Luis Figo, Deco and a young Cristiano Ronaldo. Portugal did win the last championship though and online sportsbooks in the UK mention them in the favorites again.

EURO 2020 official ball, Uniforia, dark background | Flickr
Let’s play – Image via Flickr

4. Spain winning twice in a row

The Spanish team won the second European Championship in 1864 and finished as a runner-up in 1984.  Then the fans had to wait 24 years for another European trophy. But their team’s victory in 2008 was only the beginning. As Spain won the following World Cup in 2010 and defended their title in the Euro 2012. The Spanish team had such brilliant players like Andres Iniesta, Xavi, David Silva and Sergio Ramos. And great managers in Luis Aragones and Vicente del Bosque who set up the best teams of their times.

Spain dominated against all opponents and defeated Germany, the Netherlands and Italy in the finals. Thanks to their great youth development, talents like Sergio Busquets and Jordi Alba joined the more experienced players. They became part of the latest success which meant a 4-0 victory against Italy in the 2012 final. Since then though the team hasn’t achieved similar results. Their performance wasn’t convincing in the first match against Sweden either. Next Spain will face Poland where they have the odds of 1.33 to win the game.

3. Paul Gascoigne and his legendary goal celebration

The 1996 European Championship was held in England, with the English fans hoping for a home victory at the end. It didn’t happen even though the team started the competition well. They won their group after defeating arch rival Scotland and the Netherlands and drawing with Switzerland. One of the most memorable moments in the Euros was actually the stunning  goal of English midfielder Paul Gascoigne. He scored it against Scotland making all English fans crazy.

His goal celebration was even more glorious after and became an iconic moment. As Gazza and his teammates, Alan Shearer, Steve McManaman and Jamie Redknapp imitated a drinking scandal which surrounded the team a few weeks before the tournament.  The happy atmosphere didn’t last long though. As the team lost against Germany in the semi-final in the penalty shoot-out. Now online gambling sites in the UK hope for a better result and offer the odds of 6.50 for their final victory.

2. Beautiful goals from Van Basten and Ibrahimovic

There have been several great goals scored in the history of the Euros, but some of them are really special. Like Marco Van Basten’s brilliant volley against the Soviet Union in the final of the 1988 European Championship. The Dutch team was already leading 1-0 thanks to another legendary player, Ruud Gullit. When Van Basten secured his country’s first European title. The Milan forward scored five goals during the tournament which also earned him the top goalscorer title.

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Swedish legend Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored a similarly wonderful goal against Italy in 2004. Which was also the Swedish equalizer in the group game. Ibra scored his back-heel volley in the 85th minute and helped his team to get through to the knockout stage. The veteran forward was supposed to play in this year’s tournament again. But sadly he had to miss it due to an injury. We might see more brilliant goals from him though in next season’s Serie A. 

most memorable moments in the Euros
Ibrahimovic – Andy Witchger, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

1. Antonin Panenka’s legendary penalty

Czechoslovakia played against West Germany in the 1976 final where the game ended with a 2-2 result after 90 minutes. The German team managed to equalize after being 2-0 down with the goals of Muller and Holzenbein. With the latter scoring in the 89th minute. After having no goal in the extra time came the penalty shoot-out. Where the Czech team led 4-3 due to Uli Hoeness’s miss. Their last shooter, Antonin Panenka came to take the fifth penalty and made history. As the brilliant midfielder used a previously unknown technique to score which was named after him later. The Czech team won the tournament which is still the country’s only title in its history.

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