The UEFA Euro 2021 kicks off on June 11, 2021. The highly anticipated football event was slated for 2020 but couldn’t go ahead as planned due to the outbreak of Covid-19 in Europe. One year later, the competition will be taking place amid the still ongoing global pandemic, and the uncertainty surrounding the tournament remains complex.
This article looks at everything you need to know about Euro 2021 from important dates, qualifying nations, tournament format, hosting nations, how/where to watch live Euro 2021 matches, etc. Read on.
The delayed competition begins on June 11 and concludes on July 11, 2021. The opening match of the championship — between Italy and Turkey on June 11 — will take place at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome. This summer’s tournament marks the 16th edition of the flagship UEFA competition.
Euro 2021 Hosts
The UEFA Euro men’s football tournament is a quadrennial football competition that goes back to 1960. To commemorate the 60th anniversary of Europe’s quadrennial festival of football, the Euro 2021 matches will be played in 11 cities across the continent. UEFA came up with this idea way before the Covid-19 pandemic hit. The championship will go ahead as planned despite the fact that the pandemic is still a problem in most of Europe.
Which European cities will be hosting Euro 2021 games? The following towns/stadiums will host three group games and one last 16 games.
- Johan Cruijff Arena in Amsterdam, Netherlands
- National Arena Bucharest in Bucharest, Romania
- Puskás Aréna in Budapest, Hungary
- Parken Stadium in Copenhagen, Denmark
- Hampden Park in Glasgow, Scotland
- Stadium La Cartuja Sevilla in Seville, Spain
Each of these stadiums/cities (except Saint Petersburg) will be hosting three group games and one quarter-final game:
- Baku Olympic Stadium in Baku, Azerbaijan
- Football Arena in Munich, Germany
- Stadio Olimpico in Rome, Italy
- Saint Petersburg Stadium in Saint Petersburg, Russia (six group games and one quarter-final)
Euro 2021 Teams
Expect all the usual suspects in this summer’s Euro tournament. Some of the prominent names among the Euro 2021 teams include a slew of former winners such as Germany, Spain, France, Russia (as the Soviet Union), Italy, Czech Republic (Czechoslovakia), Netherlands, Denmark, and Portugal. Other big names in this summer’s Euro championship include the 2018 world cup finalists Croatia, England, Belgium, Sweden, Turkey, Switzerland, Finland, and Scotland.
Although the competition is being held under challenging circumstances, there were no significant changes to the Euro 2021 format. The Euro 2021 format remains pretty the same as the 2016 Euro tournament. There are 24 participating teams, as usual. The teams will be put into six groups of four. The top two teams in each group and the four best third-placed teams of the six groups will progress to the last 16.
Can Fans Attend Live Euro Matches?
Europe’s football governing body, UEFA, stipulates that each hosting city put on games with at least 25% capacity in the stadiums. Cities that couldn’t meet these requirements were stripped of their hosting rights for the Euro 2021 tournament. At this point, it is safe to say that Euro 2021 matches will not be played in empty stadiums. You may be able to attend live Euro matches if you live in one of the hosting cities.
How to Watch Euro 2021
Attending this summer’s euro matches is going to be tricky due to the ongoing pandemic. With traveling restrictions and social distancing measures, only a few lucky people will be able to watch on the stands. Not to worry, though. You can watch free Euro 2021 matches on BBC One and ITV if you are in the UK. You can watch Euro 2021 live on streaming services such as Hulu and YouTube TV in the rest of the world.
All you need is a VPN (Virtual Private Network) to watch Euro 2021 from any part of the globe. A VPN lets you reroute your internet traffic through a server in another country, say the UK. Your traffic will appear to be originating in the UK, which will allow you to stream the tournament on BBC iPlayer or ITV for free. Watching the entire competition for free is as simple as buying a VPN.
Euro 2021 kicks off in about three weeks. Even if most football fans aren’t able to attend live matches due to Covid-19, there are other ways to watch the tournament wherever you are in the world. If you want to watch all Euro 2021 live matches without hassle, you need to be prepared.