5 Euro 2016 facts

Image: netvist.org Image: netvist.org Euro 2016 is nearly upon us, with the tournament set to kick off on June 10 when hosts France plays Romania at the Stade de France. Some football fans would argue that while the FIFA World Cup is the most watched and celebrated football tournament, the European Championships is the toughest football tournament to win. With 5 former World Cup-winning countries and some of the world’s best players participating, it would be hard to argue with that assertion. Here are some facts about Euro 2016:

It’s going to have more teams than ever

For the first time ever¸ 24 teams will participate in the European Championships, expanding from the 16 team format that has been used since 1996.  This enlarged format means that there will be Euro debuts for 5 teams (Albania, Iceland, Northern Ireland, Slovakia, and Wales). Euro 2016 teams Image: ticketgum.com

The format is a little more complicated than previous tournaments

Instead of the straightforward format that football fans are used to in the European Championships (whereby the top two teams in each pool group progress to the quarterfinals) the qualifying process for the knockout rounds is a little more complicated in Euro 2016, due to the new, 24-team format. There will now be 6 groups containing 4 teams. The 2 top teams will still advance to the next round, while the 4 best third-placed teams will also qualify for the next round, which will now be the Round of 16.

It’s going to be hosted throughout France

Image: marca.com Image: marca.com There will be 10 host cities and 10 stadiums used in Euro 2016, with many of these stadiums having already been used in the 1998 FIFA World Cup. It will be the third time that France has hosted the tournament and the final will be played at the 82 000-seater Stade de France. Here is a list of the 10 stadiums and the cities they are located in:

  • Stade de France (Saint-Denis)
  • Stade Vélodrome (Marseille)
  • Stade des Lumières (Lyon)
  • Stade Pierre-Mauroy (Lille)
  • Parc des Princes (Paris)
  • Stade Bordeaux-Atlantique (Bordeaux)
  • Stade Geoffroy-Guichard (Saint-Étienne )
  • Allianz Riviera Lens (Nice)
  • Stade Félix-Bollaert (Lens)
  • Stadium Municipal (Toulouse)

Spain and Germany are looking for Euro domination

Spain Euro 2012 Image: wikipedia.org Germany World Cup 2014 Image: darkroom.baltimoresun.com Current World Cup holders Germany and Euro 2014 and 2012 winners Spain will both be seeking a record 4th title championship this year, with Spain aiming for a consecutive hat-trick of wins.  France is the only other team in the draw to have won the European Championships more than once, while England will continue the quest for their first Euro title (and are probably hoping that none of their matches go to penalty shoot-outs).

Some of the tickets are quite affordable

Image: cocacola.co.uk Image: cocacola.co.uk While the most expensive ticket for the final will cost a whopping Є895, there will also be €25 tickets available for 43 of the 51 matches. For every match, 2000 tickets will be made available for the host city’s residents, while players of the French football association will get 2000 tickets. Want to know more about Euro 2016 squads? Click here  You can also get in shape for the tournament by playing our football-themed slot Football Star  or any of our other football-themed games Football Star Shoot!  

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