Eurozone 2020: Pints aplenty for England and Scotland fans

Morata knows the line between hero and villain is thin; Strachan behind the settee

Scotland fans enjoy themselves in Londond ahead of their clash with England. Photograph: Rob Pinney/Getty

Scotland fans enjoy themselves in Londond ahead of their clash with England. Photograph: Rob Pinney/Getty

 

Lizzie Cundy’s Euros advice

Poor Lizzie Cundy got a heap of abuse for her piece in The Sun in which she offered advice to the partners of “footie-obsessed men” on how to cope with Euro 2020. “If your other half is glued to the TV screen …. you could get away with murder,” she wrote, including “house renovations”. Absorbing as some of the games have been, would you really not notice that your house was being renovated?

Any way, among the tips offered by Lizzie was: “Look at the players in their shorts and drop hints, such as: “Darling, look how fit they are.” Or: “I bet you could be as good as them.”.” As Football 365 put it: “A reminder: It’s 2021.”

Lizzie also reminisced about her marriage to former player Jason Cundy, like the time he wheeled a telly in to her hospital room to watch a game, while she recovered from having a baby, or when he’d ring a bell to get her attention whenever he was injured. “You can guess where I really wanted to shove it.” Lizzie and Jason are now divorced. Obviously.

Quote of the day

“It’s a shame that a few centimetres can take you from being on the front page to eating all of the s**t in Spain.” - A decidedly peeved Alvaro Morata on the grief he’s been getting at home during his goal drought.

Number of the day

3.4 - That’s how many million pints the British Beer & Pub Association forecast that England and Scotland fans would drink in pubs on Friday night. How did they come up with the number? No clue.

Alvaro Morata endured a difficult evening against Sweden. Photograph: Pierre-Philippe Marcou/Getty/AFP
Alvaro Morata endured a difficult evening against Sweden. Photograph: Pierre-Philippe Marcou/Getty/AFP

Most Mystifying Column of the Week

We’ll go with the one in The Sun by Tony Parsons under the headline “Brilliant player Christian Eriksen struck down - this, not whether to take the knee, is what’s important”.

The thrust of his argument was that what happened Eriksen was so awful, that it is time for perspective - so it’s time for players to stop taking the knee. Because it’s “meaningless virtue signalling baloney”, a “grotesque woke pantomime”, “that provokes booing among England supporters”, from players who feel they have “a moral obligation to be a paragon of political correctness”.

What, you might be asking, has Eriksen’s ordeal got to do with players taking the knee? To be honest, even after reading the column, we were none the wiser. In fact, the theory of relativity makes more sense.

Word of mouth

“Dribbling, pressing, running, the continuity, six goals scored, zero conceded, permanent domination of the opponent. So far it seems to me like the perfect orchestra.” Claudio Ranieri, coach at Sampdoria these days, is very, very much liking the cut of Italy’s Euro 2020 jib.

“I’ll put Coca-Cola here, I’ll put Heineken right here! Guys, contact me!” Now that Cristiano Ronaldo and Paul Pogba won’t be getting sponsorship deals with Coca-Cola and Heineken, Ukraine’s Andriy Yarmolenko is hoping they’ll give him a ring after he put their bottles front and centre at his press conference on Thursday. No flies on the lad.

Strachan behind the sofa

How confident was former Scotland manager Gordon Strachan feeling about Friday evening’s tussle at Wembley?

BBC Radio 5 Live: “Where will you be watching the game?”

Strachan: “From behind the settee.”

Not very.

More word of mouth

“De Ligt is a central defender and needs more leadership. He has to make himself heard, lead the department and instead he just chases his man, leaving a hole. He went to Italy to learn how to defend - I don’t think he has learned much.” - Apart from that, Marco van Basten reckons Matthijs is ace.

“He is a stubborn boy. If he is not allowed to play in the centre of the Dutch national team, he will sulk. That boy knows exactly what he wants. Ronald Koeman is playing with fire. Depay can also just fail at Barcelona, can’t he?” - If Memphis Depay gets his dream move to Barcelona this summer, it’s doubtful that he’ll invite Dutch pundit Johan Derksen to the celebrations.

“An amazing player with awful training. He gets on the pitch every morning and he doesn’t work much. You can imagine what he could be if he was a top professional.” - Jose Mourinho on Eden Hazard’s fondness for taking life easy.

“I said in an interview the other week that my two boys were English - wow, that was a mistake. My eldest, John, was straight on the phone. “We’re not English, it’s just where we were born!” They’ve got a Scottish mum and a Scottish dad - they’ve got all Scottish blood. So, let me get it right: my kids are Scottish.” - Scotland coach Steve Clarke having to do a bit of clarifying after publicly slandering his lads.

It was a lucky escape for a Greenpeace activist in Munich. Photograph: Franck Fife/Getty/AFP
It was a lucky escape for a Greenpeace activist in Munich. Photograph: Franck Fife/Getty/AFP

Luckiest escape

That would be the one enjoyed by the Greenpeace protestor who parachuted in to the Allianz Arena in Munich ahead of the Germany v France game, but got caught in camera wires before landing heavily on the pitch.

The lucky part was the police noticing the logo on his parachute. Otherwise? “If the police had determined that this was a terrorist attack, he would have paid with his life, but they spotted the Greenpeace logo,” said Bavaria’s Interior Minister, Joachim Herrmann. “The shooters had him in their sights.” Gulp.

Buffon’s big return

They’re getting a bit excited in Italy about their team’s Euro 2020-winning prospects, but one of their bigger football stories at the moment is the return of Gianluigi Buffon, the country’s most capped player, to Parma, the club where he started his career.

How impressed are the Parma Ultras by this romantic return, considering Buffon left them for Juventus? “Twenty years ago you promised us you would never wear that shitty shirt,” they wrote on the interweb, “we can only tell you that you are a little man.”

And the banner they placed outside the club’s ground? “You left as a mercenary, you cannot return as a hero. Honour the jersey.” Romance is dead.

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