Recap: The Best and Worst of Euro 2016

Pepe and Cristiano Ronaldo during the European Championship Final between Portugal and France at Stade de France on July 10, 2016 in Paris, France. Photo: Florian Ertl / Gepa / Icon Sport
Zut alors! After a month of footballing action, it’s all over. The Euros have finished, and for those who couldn’t bear the song by David Guetta, you can open your ears now. Here we look at the best and worst of Euro 2016.


Man of the Tournament

Love him or hate him, it was all about Ronaldo. He set headlines both on and off the field. His dig at Iceland and their “small mentality”, posing for a selfie with a supporter who’d run onto the field and launching a microphone into a lake. He also dazzled on the pitch, with his wonderful back heel goal against Hungary, which had an air of offside about it, as well as his glorious leap and subsequent header against Wales.

Player of the Tournament

Antoine Griezmann – The diminutive Frenchman was superb throughout the tournament and finished as the top goalscorer with 6 goals. Much was mentioned of Paul Pogba and his impending £100 million move to Old Trafford, but you’d be forgiven for thinking that Griezmann is the £100 million player in the French team. The final was his 70th game of the season and he looked shattered by the end of it.

Best Newcomer

Although Wales reached the semi-finals, Iceland have to take this award. 8% of their population travelled to France to watch their team play, whilst 99.8% of their population tuned in to see them play France. The other 0.2% must have been watch the Icelandic version of Eastenders that night or doing their laundry. The “Viking Clap” won’t be forgotten quickly, and neither will their over exuberant commentator.

Biggest Flops

England’s collapse was entirely predictable and when it finally happened, it was reasonably entertaining. Utterly terrible and tactically inept in the tournament, the English weren’t missed, either by fans in the stadium or members of the French public.

Best Tactic

Wales, Italy and Germany all made the 3-5-2 formation work, much to Louis Van Gaal’s dismay. The formation worked as all three teams made it through to the latter stages of the tournament. Other strong tactics that worked were epic defences and team spirit.

Best Individual Moment

The out-of-contract Hal Robson-Kanu pulled off the best individual moment of the tournament with his “Cruyff turn” in the box which fooled three Belgian defenders, before calmly finishing from 10 yards out.

Miss of the Tournament

Zlatan missed a sitter from a yard out against Italy and Manchester United fans can enjoy that kind of action at Old Trafford next season. Raheem Sterling missed some easy chances, but few will forget Simone Zaza’s penalty attempt against Germany. In scenes reminiscent of the start of the Grand National, the Italian striker stepped up and blasted it over the net. The Italian rugby team have struggled for a kicker recently, but Zaza could be worth a look.

Best Touchline Operator

The touchline is the place where football’s ugliness takes its stand and the bar has been set awfully low for this award. Alan Pardew did “The Pardew” in the Cup final, whilst Joachim Low had a rather more personal touch, however the winner for this award must be Antonio Conte. After yelling to his players that he’d kill them, he was seen climbing over the dugout celebrating an Italian victory. Coming to a Premier League team near you next month…

Most vain

This is one award Ronaldo doesn’t win and yes you read that correctly. Turkey’s Ozan Tufan was seen doing his hair at exactly the same time as Luka Modric fired a shot into the back of the net. He said after being accused, “I don’t get how a single moment in which I do my hair is deemed a mistake. It damages my confidence.”

Best pundit

Robbie Savage… Only joking, it has to go to Super Slaven Bilic. The Croatian manager jumped onto the table when Dimitri Payet scored the winner against Romania and his passionate approach was refreshing to see.
Song of the tournament
Will Grigg will go down as a European Championship legend, without even playing a minute. His song was one of the highlights of the tournament.


Worst Tactic

England’s tactics – Don’t really know what they were trying, Kane taking set pieces was pointless and there was no structure.

Worst Question

“Will Joe Hart be dropped for the quarter final?” Mark Pougatch. LET’S ACTUALLY GET THAT FAR FIRST MARK…

Worst Pundit

There were lots of contenders for this award, but Robbie Savage wins by a country mile. Wales were great to watch, but it was an ordeal for the ears. Savage made no attempt to be impartial and it was truly awful to listen to.

Worst personal hygiene

Who knows what goes on behind the Euro 2016 doors, but everyone saw what happened on the German touchline. Joachim Low re-arranged his formation, but not the one that was on the field. A quick scratch and sniff in public and no eyelids batted… Unfortunately Joachim, we all saw; just make sure you wash your hands next time.

Words by @DominicTrant