Euro 2020: great teams, not so great policies

Italy has won the Euro 2020 European football championship with a 3-2 victory against England on penalties. The game was watched by 60,000 fans at London's Wembley Stadium. The day after the final Europe's commentators are full of praise for the two teams but criticise a lack of scrutiny regarding the organisation of the tournament in the context of the pandemic.

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L'Equipe (FR) /

Italy restored to former glory

The Azzurri are working their magic again, L'Équipe applauds:

“Basically, the most playful team has won. The team that had (almost) the whole continent behind it before the game. The team headed by national manager Roberto Mancini, who has restored its lost lustre after the fiasco of not qualifying for the 2018 World Cup - with now 34 games without a defeat. And the team of two indestructible seniors of football: Leonardo Bonucci and Giorgio Chiellini, who together are 70 years old.”

La Stampa (IT) /

England is the more noble team

La Stampa would have liked the English to win the title:

“This victory would also have been important because, although their team isn't the best on the pitch, it is certainly the best from an ethical perspective, thanks to the commitment of their players against inequality, racism, misunderstanding and division. Sterling, Rashford and Kane are not players who only think about their salary and how to best position the new Lamborghini between the two Ferraris in the garage. The fans love them not only because they play well, but also because of their commitment to causes they care about. If they had won the European Championship, they could have given even more visibility and space to the issues they support personally. They would have been listened to more, they could have better represented the demands of England's multi-ethnic society.”

Diário de Notícias (PT) /

The winner is Covid-19

Exuberant football celebrations without masks in the midst of the pandemic - Diário de Notícias can hardly believe its ears:

“It was all sponsored by the most irresponsible of all European organisations - Uefa. Because of their greed, images of stadiums full of multitudes without masks were seen all over the world. ... Pandemics and lockdowns have made our memories highly selective and numbed the fight against presumption. ... The luxury of living in Europe is making us ignore the fact that only 0.4 percent of vaccines have been distributed to poor countries and barely 25 percent of the world's population is protected. ... The WHO has already said it: we are accomplices to a 'catastrophic moral failure'. And this will not go unpunished: the virus will not be eradicated.”

Corriere del Ticino (CH) /

Exploited for Johnson's risky course

Corriere del Ticino is particularly annoyed about the lax rules at the last three European Championship matches, and sees the packed Wembley Stadium as

another symbol flaunted with a certain superficiality by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who - despite the undesirable outcome in terms of sport - has used it as a geopolitical instrument. There can be no other explanation for the fact that in the end the stadium was filled to 75 percent capacity - crazy when you look at it from a health perspective. Uefa, perhaps in debt for the British prime minister's support in the fight against Super League, couldn't but give its blessing to this move by 'Bojo'. The commercial maximisation of a controversial formula to which Uefa has had to adapt, as its president, Aleksander Čeferin, admitted.”