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Euro 2024: England’s awful record in their opening European Championship fixture

Explore England’s disappointing history in their opening Euro Championship matches, from their debut in 1968 to their breakthrough win in 2020.

Euro 2024: England's awful record in their opening European Championship fixture osf
First Published Jun 16, 2024, 7:16 PM IST

Gareth Southgate faces a familiar challenge as England prepare to kick off their Euro 2024 campaign against Serbia, aiming to overcome their historical struggle in tournament openers. Here’s a look at England’s dismal record in their opening European Championship fixtures:

England’s Awful Record in Their Opening Euros Fixture:

Yugoslavia 1-0 England (Euro 1968)
England, as defending World Cup champions, suffered a late defeat to Yugoslavia in the semi-finals.

Belgium 1-1 England (Euro 1980)
Ray Wilkins’ opener was cancelled out immediately by Belgium, and England eventually crashed out in the group stage.

England 0-1 Republic of Ireland (Euro 1988)
Ray Houghton’s header sealed a shocking defeat for England, who exited the tournament winless.

Denmark 0-0 England (Euro 1992)
Another goalless draw started another disappointing campaign for England.

England 1-1 Switzerland (Euro 1996)
Alan Shearer scored early, but a late penalty from Kubilay Türkyilmaz resulted in a draw. England later reached the semi-finals.

Portugal 3-2 England (Euro 2000)
England blew a 2-0 lead as Portugal staged a comeback to secure victory.

France 2-1 England (Euro 2004)
Despite Frank Lampard’s goal, England conceded late to France, including a Zinedine Zidane brace.

France 1-1 England (Euro 2012)
Joleon Lescott’s goal was cancelled out by Samir Nasri as England settled for a draw.

England 1-1 Russia (Euro 2016)
Eric Dier’s free-kick was not enough as Russia equalized in stoppage time, leading to a draw.

England 1-0 Croatia (Euro 2020)
Raheem Sterling’s goal finally gave England their first opening game win at the Euros.

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