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EURO 2024

Who won the last European Championship and which country has the most titles?

Euro 2024, the 17th edition of the tournament, kicks off today with hosts Germany taking on Scotland in the inaugural match. Let’s look back at the previous edition and the list of winners.

Euro 2024, the 17th edition of the tournament, kicks off today with hosts Germany taking on Scotland in the inaugural match. Let’s look back at the previous edition and the list of winners.

The 17th edition of the European Football Championship, or the Euros as it is more commonly known, kicks off this evening in Munich with tournament hosts Germany taking on Scotland in the inaugural match.

Italy start off as the defending champions. The Azzurri lifted the Henri Delaunay Trophy at Euro 2020 which was delayed by a year due to the coronavirus pandemic. At Wembley of all places, Italy claimed their second title, denying England their first.

Germany - Scotland

Italy pile on the misery for England

Gareth Southgate led England to their first final in 55 years and with Wembley as the setting, it looked like the stars were at last in alignment for the Three Lions. There was even more cause for optimism when Luke Shaw arrived unmarked at the back post to volley England ahead after just two minutes - the fasted goal ever record in a Euro final.

But if there is a team who are characterized by resilience and skilled at playing the waiting game, it’s Italy. Roberto Mancini’s side kept Jordan Pickford busy with a relentless assault on the England goal for the next hour.

Their persistence paid off when Leonard Bonucci tapped in from close range to level the score during a frantic goalmouth scramble. It remained level for the rest of the match and after extra-time, leaving the game to be decided from the penalty spot.

Pickford parried Andrea Boletti’s effort to raise England’s hopes but when Rashford, Sancho and Saka all missed, the trophy was Italy’s and four more year’s of hurt for the Lions.

Which teams have won the most European Championships?

Had they beaten Portugal in 2016, France would have become the competition’s joint-most successful nation, joining Germany and Spain as three-time continental kings.

Germany: winners in 1972, 1980 and 1996

Competing as West Germany, Die Mannschaft first won the European Championship during its initial period as a four-team finals tournament, defeating the Soviet Union 3-0 in the 1972 final courtesy of a brace by Gerd Müller, either side of a goal by Herbert Wimmer.

The Germans then added a second continental crown in 1980, winning the Euros in its first year as an expanded, eight-team event with a victory over Belgium in the trophy decider. Horst Hrubesch scored twice as Jupp Derwall’s men claimed a 2-1 triumph in Rome.

West Germany had also reached the final four years earlier, only to lose on penalties to Czechoslovakia in Belgrade. Famously, the Czechs’ winning spot-kick was an effort cheekily dinked down the middle by Antonin Panenka, whose name is now used to refer to the technique, which as many takers have found out, is not without its risks.

After reunification, Germany were runners-up in the Euros for a second time in 1992, slipping to a shock final defeat to outsiders Denmark as Kim Vilfort and John Jensen secured a 2-0 triumph for a side that had not originally qualified for the finals. The Danes only made it to Sweden after Yugoslavia were disqualified following the outbreak of civil war in the country.

At Euro ‘96 four years on - with 16 teams now taking part - Germany again faced heavy underdogs in the final, but this time avoided embarrassment. Although Patrick Berger’s penalty gave the Czech Republic a surprise lead at Wembley, Oliver Bierhoff’s double - the second a golden goal aided by Petr Kouba’s goalkeeping gaffe - ensured the Germans won the trophy.

Germany have since made it to one more European Championship final, in 2008, losing to Spain in Vienna.

Spain: winners in 1964, 2008 and 2012

That Euro 2008 win for Spain was La Roja’s second title, and arrived over four decades after their first.

In 1964, in the second edition of a competition still known at the time by its original name - the European Nations’ Cup - Marcelino’s late header gave Spain a 2-1 victory over the Soviet Union in the final in Madrid, after Galimzyan Khusainov had cancelled out Jesús María Piñeda’s opener for the hosts.

The win over the Soviets came four years after the Spaniards were disqualified from the inaugural Euros because Spain’s far-right dictator, General Franco, refused to allow the team to travel to the communist USSR to face the Russians.

Spain later lost to France in the 1984 final, before in 2008 a side featuring Iker Casillas, Xavi, Andrés Iniesta, David Villa and Co. bagged the first of three straight major tournament wins with a 1-0 triumph over Germany, Fernando Torres grabbing the final’s only goal.

After going on to lift the World Cup in South Africa in 2010, Spain retained their European title in 2012, thrashing Italy 4-0 in a memorable final performance in Kiev.

Germany1972*, 1980*, 19961976*, 1992, 2008
Spain1964, 2008, 20121984
France1984, 20002016
Italy1968, 20202000, 2012
Soviet Union19601964, 1972, 1988
Czech Republic1976**1996
Yugoslavia1960, 1968

*As West Germany

**As Czechoslovakia

This year’s event will see the hosts pay tribute to their legendary captain Franz Beckenbauer who passed away earlier this year. in Friday’s opening ceremony. Former players Bernard Dietz and Jürgen Klinsmann will be joined by Beckenbauer’s wife Heidi as they bring the European Championship trophy onto the pitch before the tournament gets underway.

The opening Euro 2024 game between Germany and Scotland kicks off at 3:00 pm EDT/ 12 noon PDT at the Allianz Stadium in Munich. Viewers in the United States will be able to watch the game live on Fox Network and ViX. You can also stream the game on the online platform fuboTV, which offers new users a free introductory trial.