Menu

Euro 2016: 10 best European Championship moments

Euro 2016 gets underway in Paris on Friday night, and it’s hoped that it turns out to be a memorable tournament full of goals and entertainment.

24 nations will be hoping to end up in the final on July 10 in the French capital, but along the way there will naturally be moments that stand out more so than others.

As has been the case over the years, there have been plenty of upsets, stunning goals and individual pieces of brilliance, and here are 10 of our favourites.

Stuart Pearce penalty vs Spain

After missing a key penalty in the 1990 World Cup, the England defender stepped up against Spain at Wembley at Euro 96 and hammered his effort into the back of the net.

His celebration was more memorable than the penalty though, as Pearce let his emotions go and released all the anger and frustration that had built up over the years.

Davor Suker goal vs Denmark

Croatia came up against Denmark in ’96 and with the Danes chasing a late goal, Peter Schmeichel made his way up for a corner.

Having failed in his attempt to get on the scoresheet, the shot-stopper was forced to scamper back. It looked as though the Croatians had missed their chance, but Suker produced a delightful lob to leave him hapless.

Paul Gascoigne goal vs Scotland

England took on Scotland in a memorable encounter in 1996, and Gascoigne stepped up to the occasion to score a brilliant solo goal.

His celebration with teammates and water bottles sealed the moment as England went on to secure a 2-0 win.

Oliver Bierhoff golden goal

Germany took on Czech Republic in the final in ’96, and it turned out that it played host to the first golden goal to decide a major tournament.

Bierhoff was the man responsible for the historic moment, as he scored in extra-time to break Czech hearts and seal another triumph for the Germans.

Michel Platini goal vs Portugal

En route to winning the tournament in ’84, Platini continued to inspire his side as they took on Portugal in the semi-finals.

The two teams were locked at 2-2 in extra-time and as penalties loomed, the French playmaker stepped up and scored the winning goal to book their spot in the final.

Denmark triumph in 1992

Having initially failed to qualify for the tournament, the Danes were given a reprieve after Yugoslavia were banned given the ongoing unrest and war.

From enjoying their summer on a beach to winning the tournament, it was a remarkable turnaround and one of the biggest surprises in football history.

Greece stun Europe in 2004

The Greeks went one better in 2004, as they began the tournament with a stunning win over hosts Portugal that shocked many.

However, they weren’t done. They met the Portuguese again in the final and Angelos Charisteas scored the only goal of the game to complete an incredible summer for his side.

David Trezeguet golden goal

France trailed Italy in the Euro 2000 final, but Sylvain Wiltord scored a dramatic equaliser in the final minute of injury time to force an extra 30 minutes.

The drama wasn’t over there though as Trezeguet latched onto a Robert Pires pull-back in extra-time and rifled his effort into the roof of the net to win the tournament with a golden goal.

Antonin Panenka penalty

Czechoslovakia took on West Germany in the 1976 final, and the game was eventually determined by penalties.

Panenka stepped up, kept his composure and chipped a delightful effort into the back of the net to seal a 5-3 win for his side. In the years since, countless other players have tried to replicate the iconic style of spot kick named after him.

Marco Van Basten

Speaking of iconic moments, there are few better than that seen in the 1988 final between the Netherlands and the USSR.

Ruud Gullit had given the Dutch the lead in the first half, and the win was sealed with a spectacular Van Basten volley that is still widely regarded as one of the greatest ever goals.

More Stories Antonin Panenka david trezeguet Davor Suker marco van basten Michel Platini Oliver Bierhoff Paul Gascoigne stuart pearce