Euro 2024 now set for blockbuster matches: The quarterfinal lineup

Kathmandu, July 4

The pre-quarterfinal matches of UEFA Euro 2024 held in Germany have concluded. All eight teams advancing to the quarterfinals have been determined, and the quarterfinal matchups are now set.

Now, it’s time for the blockbuster matches. The quarterfinals feature five former champions, including the current runner-up, England.

Among these, two matches will be between former champions, promising blockbuster games that could feel like finals.

In the first quarterfinal, the three-time champions Germany will face Spain. Both teams are vying for their fourth Euro title. However, one former champion will be knocked out in the quarterfinals, and it remains to be seen who will prevail.

Germany, playing at home, has been performing exceptionally well and aims to win the title. Germany secured their spot in the quarterfinals by defeating another former champion, Denmark, in the pre-quarterfinals.

Spain, on the other hand, is also in form. Spain started the tournament with a 3-0 win over Croatia and defeated the reigning champions Italy and Albania in the group stage. Spain reached the quarterfinals by beating newcomer Georgia 4-1 in the Round of 16.

The second quarterfinal will see two more former champions, Portugal and France, clash. Portugal became champions by defeating France in the 2016 final. France, the 2018 World Cup winners and 2022 World Cup runners-up, has not won the Euro since 2000. So far, France has won the Euro twice, while Portugal has won it once.

Both France and Portugal advanced somewhat luckily in the pre-quarterfinals. France narrowly defeated Belgium 1-0 with the help of an own goal. Portugal, on the other hand, secured their quarterfinal spot by beating Slovenia in a penalty shootout after 120 minutes of play. Star player Cristiano Ronaldo missed a penalty in extra time, but goalkeeper Diogo Costa saved three penalties in the shootout, making him the hero.

The winners of the Germany vs. Spain and France vs. Portugal matches will face each other in the semifinals, making these matches even more competitive and exciting.

Meanwhile, England, a strong contender before the tournament, will face Switzerland. Both teams are unbeaten, but their performances have varied. The current runner-up, England, has not lived up to expectations.

England, in Group C, reached the Round of 16 as group winners with one win and two draws. England was fortunate to beat Slovakia 2-1 in extra time in the Round of 16. Trailing by one goal in regulation time, Jude Bellingham scored an equaliser for England in injury time, and Harry Kane scored the winning goal in extra time.

Switzerland reached the quarterfinals by defeating the reigning champions Italy in the Round of 16, proving that they should not be underestimated. Switzerland performed well in the group stage, beating Hungary 3-1 in the first match and drawing the next two games. Switzerland, as group runners-up behind Germany, reached the knockout stage and stunned Italy, establishing themselves as title contenders.

The last quarterfinal will be between the Netherlands and Turkey. The Netherlands has won the Euro once, while Turkey’s best result is reaching the semifinals. The Netherlands won the Euro in 1988, while Turkey reached the semifinals in 2008.

Both teams have had average performances in this Euro. The Netherlands, finishing third in a group with Austria and France, advanced to the knockout stage as one of the best third-placed teams with one win, one draw, and one loss. In the pre-quarterfinals, the Netherlands easily defeated Romania 3-0.

Turkey, finishing as group runners-up behind Portugal with the same 6 points but inferior goal difference, reached the quarterfinals for the first time in 16 years by defeating Austria 2-1.

The winner of the Netherlands vs. Turkey match will play the winner of the England vs. Switzerland match in the semifinals. This pool has only one former champion team, and if any team other than the Netherlands or England reaches the final, it will be historic. Switzerland has never reached the semifinals before.

Euro 2024 Quarterfinal Schedule
July 5

Spain vs. Germany, 9:45 PM, MHP Arena, Stuttgart
Portugal vs. France, 12:45 AM, Volksparkstadion, Hamburg

July 6

England vs. Switzerland, 9:45 PM, Merkur Spiel-Arena, Düsseldorf
Netherlands vs. Turkey, 12:45 AM, Olympic Stadium, Berlin

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