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EURO 2020




Reaction to the draw for the Euro 2020 tournament made in Bucharest on Saturday:

Belgium coach Roberto Martinez after his team were drawn in Group B with Denmark, Russia and Finland:

“In terms of logistics, it’s probably the hardest we could’ve had, playing Russia in St Petersburg in the first game and then Denmark in the second in Copenhagen, and then going back to St Petersburg. We need to adjust our preparation and we’ll make sure that the logistics are just right.”

Russia coach Stanislav Cherchesov:

“We play the last match in the group in Denmark and against Denmark, so it could’ve been better. But no matter what the draw is we have to get prepared for each game and give our maximum.”


Germany coach Joachim Loew whose side face France, Portugal and a Playoff winner A or D in Group F:

“This is a group of death. The games in Munich will be football festivals. The expectations will be quite high. For our young team, this will be huge challenge but also a big motivation. This is the reward for winning the qualifier group.”

France coach Didier Deschamps:

“It’s the most difficult group, but we have to accept it, that’s the way it is. This will require the French team to be ready immediately.”

Portugal coach Fernando Santos:


“The group has the winners of the last three big international tournaments. It’s a tough group with two favourites for the title and one candidate. We are going to believe in our chances.”

Spain coach Luis Enrique, whose team face Sweden, Poland and Playoff winner B in Bilbao:

“For me, Bilbao is one of the best stadiums in Europe alongside Wembley – it’s marvellous, superb. I hope that we don’t let people down.

“In a competition like this, you hope to play seven games and win them all.”

Sweden coach Janne Andersson:


“Looking at the different groups, ours is not the toughest nor the easiest. We get later dates to play which gives us some extra days to prepare.”

Italy coach Roberto Mancini whose side meet Turkey, Wales and Switzerland in Group A:

“I always enjoy draws, the emotions of it… I think this is a very balanced group. I’m happy if other teams fear us a bit more after a good qualifying campaign but we are fully aware that we must continue to work hard.”

Croatia coach Zlatko Dalic whose side meet England, Czech Republic and Playoff winner C:

“It’s going to be the same as in the semi-finals of the World Cup, as well as the Nations League. I’m looking forward to that game.


“We’ll play at Wembley and kick off the Euro in front of a full stadium. They’re the favourites in our group and I’ve said before that they’re a team taking huge steps forward. They’re bringing football home.”

Ronald Koeman, Netherlands coach, after his side were draw against Ukraine, Austria and Playoff winner A or D. Austria were one of the third seeds, alongside Portugal:

“I prefer Austria to Portugal, yes. With all due respect, we know how tough Portugal is as an opponent. I like that we will play against a country that we have not played against very often.”



Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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