Football The European Championship finals are of great interest to anyone other than those who are actively following football. In addition, the Finnish national football team is also involved in the European Championships, so the interest is particularly great.
Which European Championships? What is special about Finland being involved? Owls? HS now tells you what this is all about.
Football The European Championship final tournament, the European Football Championship, is played every four years in even years, alternating with the World Cup in football. So the next World Cup will be played in 2022. Wait a minute … this isn’t an even year. That’s right, the European Championship final was postponed by a year due to a coronavirus pandemic.
The European Championship final is now being played for the 16th time. The previous 2016 European Championship finals featured 24 countries for the first time instead of the previous 16. There are also 24 countries in the European Championship finals, but the difference from the previous finals in France is that the matches are played in several different countries.
Why matches are played in eleven different cities located in different countries? Short answer: because one city, Dublin, Ireland, dropped out of the host cities at the very end …
Longer version: In 2012, the European Football Association (Uefa) decided to celebrate Uefa’s 60th anniversary with the 2020 European Championships finals in 12 to 13 cities across Europe. The father of the idea is considered to be the then chairman of Uefa Michel Platinia, which later had to give up its wash due to corruption.
Several countries applied for the Games and Uefa selected 13 cities. Of these, Brussels fell out because the construction of the stadium did not proceed on schedule. There will be no play in Dublin because Ireland was unable to guarantee public access to the matches. For the same reason, Bilbao changed to Seville.
What remained were London, Rome, Munich, Baku, St. Petersburg, Budapest, Seville, Bucharest, Amsterdam, Glasgow and Copenhagen.
Every The team that survived the European Championship final will play their first-round matches in two different cities. For example, matches in the Finnish block are played in Copenhagen and St. Petersburg. Why in these cities? Based on a reasonably complex block lottery system, Finland ended up in block B, where Denmark, Russia and Belgium also play.
Finland will play its opening match on Saturday 12 June at 7 pm in Copenhagen. Other matches in the first round Finland will play in St. Petersburg: 16 June at 4 pm against Russia and 21 June at 10 pm against Belgium.
There are six initial blocks. The top two from each block advance to the quarterfinals as well as the top four from the block trio. This gives 16 countries to the quarterfinals. From the quarter-finals onwards, only the winners will continue, meaning that there will be eight countries in the semi-finals, four in the semi-finals and two in the final. No bronze match will be played in the European Championships.
How Finland survived the European Championship final and what is special about it?
The final tournament will be entered based on the preliminary qualifiers. The European countries were divided into ten qualifying blocks, and the best two from each block survived the final tournament. Finland was second in Group J after Italy, so the place in the European Championship final was sealed. The qualifiers were held as early as 2019, when the European Championships were scheduled for summer 2020.
Wait, ten qualifiers and only two per block for the Games: that’s a total of only 20 countries. Yes, the other four countries were selected on the basis of the matches of the League of Nations … Finland would also have had a back door, as Finland would have survived the playoffs of the League of Nations, but it was not needed now. The League of Nations is a kind of more competitive form of friendly matches, but no more about it here now.
What is special about Finland’s survival in the European Championships is that Finland has never played football in the men’s European Championships before. Finland has never played in a World Cup tournament either.
In other words, when the match against Denmark starts on Saturday at 7 pm, it will be the first time the Finnish men’s national football team has played in a football value tournament.
Can Will Finland also succeed in the European Championship final? Surprises have happened in football before, so anything is possible. The raw fact is that Finland ranks 54th in the Fifa rankings (countries ranked by success). Of the countries playing in the European Championship finals, only Northern Macedonia is lower: 62nd.
Of the countries in Finland’s first block, Belgium is “modestly” number one in the Fifa ranking, Denmark tenth and Russia 38th.
And one essential thing: The Finnish national team is nicknamed “Owners”. The nickname was born in 2007 when an owl named Bub flew in the middle of the match onto the grass of the Olympic Stadium and on top of the goal trees, among other things. The Finnish and Belgian European Championship qualifiers were going on, which Finland won 2–0.
Who are pre-favorites?
Belgium in the Finnish section is one of the pre-favorites of the Games. England and France have also been successful.
In addition, Portugal, which won the 2016 European Championship finals, is strong in the papers of many experts. Signs of success have also been placed on the shoulders of Italy, Germany and Spain.
The 2018 world champion France and the 2016 European champion Portugal were, moreover, drawn into the same starting block: the teams will meet on 23 June. Germany and Hungary are also in the same block, so this is the so-called death block, ie a particularly flat and high-quality initial block.
Read more: This is how HS monitors the European Football Championships – as a novelty Accurate statistics on Owl matches immediately after the match