Football Player Diving

Euro 2020: Scotland’s Historic Win

It was a historical moment that Scotland will remember. The painfully long 23-year absence from a major men’s tournament is finally over. Scotland faced Serbia in Belgrade in their play-off final and qualified for the Euro 2020. The whole nation celebrated the historic shootout victory because it was their first qualification since 1998.

Scotland dominated the game and ended their barren streak of 10 missed tournaments. This has been their best run in 44 years. Now they will face England, Croatia and the Czech Republic in Group D next summer.

What You Should Know About the Euro 2020

Because of the coronavirus pandemic, it was eight months later that the final four places for Euro 2020’s tournament had been decided. Initially, the tournament was to take place from the 12th of June to the 12th of July this summer. However, it will now run from the 11th of June to the 11th of July 2021. 

There will be 24 teams and 51 matches, which will be hosted by 12 cities across Europe. It is still undecided on whether football fans will be allowed at the tournament. There are six groups that will participate:

  • Italy, Switzerland, Turkey, and Wales for Group A.
  • Belgium, Russia, Denmark, and Finland for Group B.
  • Ukraine, Netherlands, Austria, and North Macedonia for Group C.
  • England, Croatia, the Czech Republic, and Scotland for Group D.
  • Spain, Poland, Sweden, and Slovakia for Group E.
  • Germany, France, Portugal, and Hungary for Group F.

The Schedule for the Euro 2020

1) Scotland

For the first time since 1998, Scotland will play in a major men’s tournament. After defeating Serbia in their play-off final in Belgrade, they will be against the Czech Republic in Glasgow on the 14th of June. After that, they will come face to face with England at Wembley on the 18th of June, and lastly a final group game against Croatia a few days later.

  • Scotland vs the Czech Republic on 14 June 2021 at Hampden Park.
  • England vs Scotland on 18 June 2021 at Wembley.
  • Croatia vs Scotland on 22 June 2021 at Hampden Park.

Should Scotland win their group, they would then be against the runners-up in Dublin in Group F, which are composed of Germany, Portugal, Hungary and France. There might also be a potential quarter-final in Rome. However, if they finish second, they would be against the runners-up in Copenhagen from Group E, which are composed of Spain, Poland, Sweden, and Slovakia.

2) England

During the Euro 2016, England was knocked off the tournament by Iceland. Now, it will benefit from hosting all of their group games at Wembley. They will begin their tournament against Croatia on the 13th of June.

  • England vs Croatia on 13 June 2021 at Wembley.
  • England vs Scotland on 18 June 2021 at Wembley.
  • The Czech Republic vs England on 22 June 2021 at Wembley.

England will also have the same scenarios with Scotland if they win the group. They’ll bring a last-16 tie in Dublin against the runners-up in Group F. If placed second, they will also play against the runners-up from Group E.

3) Wales

Wales, the semi-finalists of Euro 2016, are in Group A alongside Italy who has won all 10 of their qualification matches. You also have Switzerland and Turkey. 

  • Wales vs Switzerland on 12 June 2021 at Baku’s Olympic Stadium, in Azerbaijan.
  • Turkey vs Wales on 16 June 2021 at Baku’s Olympic Stadium, in Azerbaijan.
  • Italy vs Wales on 20 June 2021 at Rome.

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Football on Field

Premier League, Other Football Sporting Events Affected by Pandemic

The novel coronavirus has killed more than 348,000 people globally, and because of it, sporting events have also been affected. The number of confirmed cases worldwide has increased to more than 5.5 million. This has caused major sporting events to either be cancelled or postponed.  

What It Means for the Premier League

But, despite the worrying situation, many have also remained hopeful and determined to continue their operations. The Premier League, for instance, has been intent on a June restart. The sporting event has been suspended since 13 March because of the pandemic. As England slowly starts to recover and with strict precautions in place, they want to be able to finish the event.

Liverpool, which is one of the main contenders in the event, was at the top of the season when it suddenly got postponed. They just needed two wins in the Premier League, and they would have been able to bag their first top-flight title since 1990.

According to an interview with BBC Radio 5 Live, Jordan Henderson, captain of Liverpool, stated: “When you go back, it is a bit different with the type of training, getting used to the ball again, longer passing and shooting and the sharpness of twisting and turning, the change of direction, you need to get used to it. After a few weeks of full training, we will be right back where we left off, hopefully.”

This is in relation to the return of their training last week. Liverpool and other clubs have been training in small groups. There are strict protocols in place, and Henderson also said that the measures are “amazing” and that the players feel “safe.”

Other Sporting Events Affected in the World, According to Al Jazeera

  • After several weeks of postponement, South Korea’s football league season restarted on May 8. Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors, the reigning champions, beat FA Cup holders Suwon Bluewings by 1-0 in an empty World Cup Stadium in Jeonju.
  • In the United States, the MLS, which is a top-tier football league, extended its postponement until at least June 8. This is because there were still many confirmed coronavirus cases.
  • The Confederation of African Football also announced the postponement of the African Champions League semi-finals last April 12. It was to take place in May.
  • The schedule for the Nations League Finals of the Confederation of North, Central American, and Caribbean Association Football, was from June 4 to June 7. But it has been suspended. It will take place for a later date.
  • The Russian Football Union suspended all competitions such as the Russian league at a meeting on March 17. 
  • The Bundesliga resumed its season last May 16 after the two-month hiatus in Germany.
  • The South American Football Confederation, postponed the Copa America event until 2021. It was to take place from June 12 to July 12 in Colombia and Argentina.
  • UEFA postponed the EURO 2020 tournament until 2021. It will now take place from June 11 to July 11, 2021. The major sporting event was to take place from June 12 to July 12, 2020, in 12 nations across the continent.
  • On April 1, UEFA also suspended all matches in the Europa League and Champions League “until further notice.”
  • FIFA and the Asian Football Confederation postponed the Asian World Cup qualifying matches that were supposed to take place in March and June.
  • The Asian Champions League matches have been suspended and moved back to September.
  • Ajax would not be declared champion due to the postponement of the Dutch football league.

Major sporting events may have been stopped all across the world, but it does not mean that it would be for a long time. Football fans and bettors can still support their favorite teams, as many associations are doing their best to continue the events. 

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