A general view of the Stadio Olimpico in Rome ahead of today’s kick-off of Euro 2020 between Italy and Turkey
Today the long-awaited opening of the Euro 2020 finals heralds. Here are the facts about the start of a tournament that starts a year late due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and a foretaste of what’s ahead this weekend.
Italy will score in the opening game of the European Championship, a scramble for Group A at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome, at 8 p.m. on Turkey.
The game will be shown live on RTE2 & BBC1. RTE will broadcast live and free to air every game from the opening day to the final at Wembley Stadium on July 11th.
Yes, there will be an opening ceremony at the Stadio Olimpico from 7pm (Irish time) with strong Irish participation, da Bono and The Edge from U2, together with one of the world’s greatest DJs / producers Martin Garrix, experience a virtual performance of the tournament’s official song ‘We are the people.’
Italy – managed by former Manchester City coach Roberto Mancini – have been unbeaten in 27 games and are set to overthrow the Turks on opening night. However, there are no guarantees and often the biggest surprises come in the first round of the game. Italy will have no fond memories of the USA’s 1994 opening game against Ireland, which ended in defeat before they reformed and advanced to the final.
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Paddy Power’s game odds are Italy to win by 1/2, Turkey to win by 7/1 and 1¼ for a tie.
Yes, 16,000 happy spectators – about 25 percent of the capacity of the Stadio Olimpico – will be present at today’s game.
For Italy, all eyes will be on Federico Chiesa to inspire the Azzurri. If that name sounds familiar, it’s because the 23-year-old Juventus striker is the son of former Parma striker and Italy’s Enrico Chiesa.
Turkey, meanwhile, will turn to veteran striker and captain Burak Yilmaz for inspiration leave. The 35-year-old plays and still scores regularly for French club Lille.
Irish fans will keep an eye on this group as « Celtic cousins » Wales and her talisman Gareth Bale hope to make it through to the next round. Tomorrow they will meet Switzerland in the Azerbaijani capital Baku (kick-off at 2 p.m. Irish time).
THE upcoming European Championship is a stage on which some of the best players in the world can prove their skills. But while Kylian Mbappe, Harry Kane and Cristiano Ronaldo are household names, without exception a young, much lesser-known talent becomes a breakout star. Here we introduce six precocious talents whose names could be on everyone’s lips by the end of the summer.
Joao Felix (Portugal) Felix (below) may not be the most shocking name for this list, but the tournament could be for the A moment of growing up for 21-year-olds. Now he can add his La Liga title with Atletico Madrid to his 2019 Portuguese Primeira Liga winners medal and Nations League crown – but in a squad as talented as the Portuguese, he can sometimes get lost in the mix. He has three goals from his 16 international matches so far – and has to come up with the opportunity if he wants to step out of the shadow of Ronaldo, Bernardo Silva and Bruno Fernandes.
Dejan Kulusevski (Sweden) Juventus may have had a frustrating season , but there is no doubt that Kulusevski has proven to be a positive force during the season. The 21-year-old winger scored and assisted in Coppa Italia’s 2-1 final win over former side Atalanta before his spot on the Swedish squad was confirmed. He has made eleven international appearances and with Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Kulusevski will likely be one of the players who will attract the Swedish fans – especially if he shows a strong performance in the summer. right) is another excellent product from the legendary Ajax Academy and hopes to make a name for itself at the European Championships. With two Dutch titles and a U17 World Cup winner’s medal in 2018, the defense-conscious teenager made his debut in the Netherlands in March. Even if he may not be on the team in the first game against Ukraine, he will be there, or for about as long as Holland can participate in the tournament – and will undoubtedly benefit from the experience.
Eljif Elmas (North Macedonia ) Tournament debutants North Macedonia will be looking for some memorable surprises when they make their first appearance at a grand finale. Elmas will undoubtedly play a huge role for the newbies, much like he did with a surprising 2-1 win in World Cup qualifiers in Germany earlier this year. The 21-year-old midfielder has made 80 appearances for Napoli and was named Macedonian Footballer of the Year in 2019 – with a strong tournament, his population will only continue to grow.
Phil Foden (England) Foden’s rise to the exhilarating heights of the game Expected for some time and the Manchester City striker had a good season for club and country. Still only 20 years old, he picked up a third Premier League winners medal last month and scored 16 goals in all competitions for Pep Guardiola’s side. He also made his first appearance in England’s senior squad, scoring two goals in the Nations League 4-0 win over Iceland in November – and he could prove to be Gareth Southgate’s wild card in the field if the Three Lions deep into the tournaments.
Pedri (Spain) Unlike most young talents breaking into the Barcelona first team, Pedri is not a product of the club’s famous La Masia academy. The 18-year-old came from Las Palmas and played 37 LaLiga games in his first season at Nou Camp. The midfielder became the second youngest player in Barca history to reach 50 games and made it into Luis Enrique’s 24-man squad in hopes of impressing for his country.
They have a core of teams who can potentially win it – England, Belgium, Italy, France, Spain, Germany and Portugal – but otherwise I would have trouble seeing someone with a real challenge, maybe Poland, if Robert Lewandowski can make it with him / p>
Declan Rice has indicated that he had already set out to play for England during the 2018 World Cup, just weeks after playing for Ireland against world champions France.
Before every big tournament, I always wonder which France will appear: the mess of a team that we saw in South Africa in 2010 or the impressive unity we saw in Russia in 2018?
In Gary Dickers Memorial Bank, the story of Scotland’s international resurgence begins with a discussion in the showers at Kilmarnock Football Club.
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