The dramatic showdown between England and Italy’s national men’s teams in the European Championship final last night (Sunday July 11) ended on a bitter note for England fans, with their team’s players even removing their silver medals as the Azzurri team lifted the Euro 2020 trophy.
After Scotland’s match against Croatia on June 22 ended in a crushing 3-1 loss for the national men’s team, hopes of qualifying for the next round of matches at the UEFA tournament were quickly dashed as they were knocked out of the competition.
Despite the disappointment which came with the result, fans are still riding high on the excitement that came with seeing Scotland national men’s team contend in the Euros for the first time in 20 years and after Callum McGregor levelled the playing field in the first half with the first Scottish goal at a major tournament since 1998.
England fans are likewise now looking ahead to the 2022 World Cup and eagerly awaiting the chance to see the young, hopeful Three Lions squad back in action.
How often are the Euros?
The Euros are held every four years, with the next championship set to be held in 2024 in Germany.
This is despite the postponement of 2020’s tournament to this summer which came as a result of the pandemic.
So as not to clash with the FIFA World Cup which is also held every four years, the European Championships first started in 1960 and take place two years before and after every world cup tournament.
When and where is the next World Cup?
The next FIFA World Cup 2022 fwill be held in Qatar next year from November 21 to December 18, with the tournament set to be the last to feature 26 teams – with a whopping 48 teams set to compete in 2026’s international tournament.
In a move away from tradition, the World Cup 2022 will be held in the winter, rather than the summer months, to relieve players and fans alike of Qatar’s swelteringly hot summers.
The ultimate showdown at the World Cup 2022 final will take place on December 18 at Qatar’s Lusail Iconic Stadium.
Qualifiers have already commenced, with Scotland's first qualifying match set to take place on September 1 against Denmark and England’s next qualifying match against Hungary on September 2.
Will Scotland make it to the World Cup?
As the road to the 2022 World Cup begins, Scotland will be looking ahead to September and preparing to battle it out against fellow Group F teams Austria, Denmark, the Faroe Islands, Israel and Moldova in the qualifying rounds.
Steve Clarke’s side currently sit second in qualifying group F on five points after three games following draws against Austria and Israel, whilst they were convincing winners over Faroe Islands. Denmark currently top the group on nine points.
It’s certainly a tough group for the team, especially as two of their next three qualifying games come away to Denmark and Austria this September. However, the sides battling draw away at Wembley in Euro 2020 shows they can battle it out with the best of them, and fans will be hopeful they can produce enough in these games to reach Qatar 2022.
Scottish captain and Liverpool defender Andy Robertson took to Instagram the day after Scotland’s knockout from the European tournament on June 23 to thank the Tartan Army for their unwavering support of the team at the Euros 2020.
“What matters now is that we do all that we can to ensure that this is the start of a wonderful journey rather than the end,” Roberson said.
He added: “We want more. We want to qualify for more tournaments and we want to make the people of this magnificent country even prouder!
“We will give everything we have to make this a reality.”
What are England’s chances at the World Cup 2022?
The Three Lions squad have been placed in Group I in the world championship’s 2022 draw, with Hungary, Poland, Albania, Andorra and San Marino also playing in the same group.
England are in the best position out of the bunch so far having already won the first three of their qualifying matches.
On March 25 the team beat San Marino 5-0, then went on to triumph over Albania in a 2-0 away win and a home victory of 2-1 against Poland.
Speaking in his press conference today (July 12) following the team’s Euro 2020 title loss, England manager Gareth Southgate said: “We’ve overcome a lot of hurdles we’ve never been able to in the past.
“We know a lot of players are still very inexperienced in terms of international football and have delivered at a very high level.
“And we’ve taken Italy, who are a top, top team and unbeaten in 30, to the wire.”
The England men’s team’s last victory at the World Cup was in 1966, with the team coming closest to winning again in 1990 and 2018 as they reached the semi finals before getting knocked out.