In this football language podcast we start a series of posts on the Euro 2020 competition, which kick off this June. This time, we go through some numbers connected with the tournament. Check out our glossary of footballing phrases here and access all the previous posts and podcasts here at languagecaster.com. If you have any suggestions or questions then contact us at email@example.com. (DB=Damon)
Football Language Podcast: Euro 2020 in Numbers
DB: Welcome everyone to the show for those who love football and want to learn more about the language of football in English. My name’s Damon and I hope you are well wherever you are in the world.
Now on this short football language podcast we’re going to take a look at some of the numbers behind Euro 2020. This competition, the European Championship between the leading nations of Europe was planned for June and July 2020 – last year. Of course, the COVID-19 pandemic meant it was cancelled, but, a year later it is set to kick off. I’m sure many many football fans are looking forward to this international tournament.
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Yes, you are listening to languagecaster.com and that message was in Hungarian, and Hungary are one of the teams taking part in Euro 2020. Right, let’s kick off with some numbers that explain some of the key points of this competition.
Euro 2020 will be the 16th European Football Championship. They started with the first in 1960, which was held in France, and the last one was held in… France. The hosts that time lost 1-0 to an extra time strike by Portugal’s Eder. A great goal in a tight game.
The most times any country has won the tournament. Germany, or for the first two titles West Germany, won the Euros in 1972, 1980, and 1996. Spain have also won it three times – 1964, 2008, and 2012. They are the only team to have won it back-to-back – twice in a row. However, Germany have an impressive record of reaching the finals – six times to Spain’s four.
The number of teams in this year’s competition. The tournament started in 1960 with four teams, before expanding to eight in 1980. In 1996, hosted in England, the format was expanded to include 16 teams. The current format of 24 teams was introduced last time in the 2016 competition in France. I must say, I prefer the 16 team competition, which feels much more focused and exciting.
With 24 teams, 16 go through to the knockout phases, which kind of makes the group stages a little less exciting.
This competition is a truly European one, with 12 countries and cities hosting games, so there are 12 venues. The furthest west is the Aviva Stadium Dublin in the Republic of Ireland. The most southerly venues is the Stadio Olimpico in Rome, in Italy. Going north, the furthest north is the Krestovsky Stadium in St. Petersburg, Russia. The most easterly venue is the Olympic Stadium in Baku, Azerbaijan. Stadiums in Scotland, England, France, Germany, Hungary, Denmark, Spain, and Holland complete the countries.
Even with the COVID-19 pandemic still a factor, the organisers of the Euros are hoping that the stadiums will be able to have 25% of their seats open for spectators. Baku and St. Petersburg are aiming for an even higher number of 50%, although Baku will not allow overseas spectators except if their team is playing.
The number of times North Macedonia has appeared in the European Championship. So, a first appearance for the Macedonians. Can they pull off a shock? They play Austria in Bucharest on the 13 June so I’m sure the neutrals will want to see them put in a good performance.
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So, a few numbers, facts and figures about the Euros and Euro 2020. Over the coming weeks we will be posting about the groups, the favourites, dark horses, underdogs, and generally beginning to get excited about this great football tournament!
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Enjoy all of the football this weekend and stay safe. Ta-ra!