SuperSport viewers on DStv and GOtv can look forward to major international football as UEFA Euro 2020 takes centre stage, with the European continental tournament running from 11 June to 11 July 2021.
Despite taking place in 2021, the tournament will still be known as UEFA Euro 2020. The European football governing body said the event retained its name “to keep the original vision of the tournament, which was set to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the European Football Championship (1960–2020)” and to “serve as a reminder of how the whole football family came together to respond to the extraordinary circumstances of the Covid-19 pandemic, and of the difficult times that Europe, and the world, had to go through in 2020,” says Mrs Leah Kooma, Chief Customer Officer, MultiChoice Zambia.
SuperSport is your #HomeOfFootball and the ultimate destination for lovers of ‘The Beautiful Game’. Let’s take a closer look at the format of the tournament, the top teams and players, as well as some special ‘did you know’ information
UEFA Euro 2020 features the same 24-team format as Euro 2016 (with six groups of four teams each, round robin action, followed by a knockout phase), but instead of being located in one ‘host’ country, the tournament will be spread over 11 cities in 11 different nations:
Wembley Stadium in London, England; Stadio Olimpico in Rome, Italy; Allianz Arena in Munich, Germany; Puskas Arena in Budapest, Hungary; Olympic Stadium in Baku, Azerbaijan; Krestovsky Stadium in Saint Petersburg, Russia; La Cartuja in Seville, Spain; Arena National in Bucharest, Romania; Johan Cruyff Arena in Amsterdam, Netherlands; Hampden Park in Glasgow, Scotland; and Parken Stadium, Copenhagen, Denmark.
Each city will host three group stage matches and one match in the round of 16 or quarterfinals, with the exception of Saint Petersburg, which will host six group stage matches, and London, which will host two matches in the round of 16. Wembley will also host both semifinals (July 6-7) and the final on July 11. The stadiums will operate with limited capacity
due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, varying from 20 to 50 percent depending on prevailing circumstances.
Teams to watch
Portugal are the reigning UEFA Euro champions but do not enter 2020 as one of the clear favourites, given that they were only runners-up in their qualifying group behind Ukraine. Yet with Cristiano Ronaldo leading their attack and Manchester United star Bruno Fernandes as playmaker, A Seleção should certainly not be underestimated.
The bookies’ favourites are England – something of a surprise given their poor record at the European Championship, where the Three Lions have only been to one semifinal in the past 50 years. England, though, have attacking options (such as Harry Kane, Raheem Sterling, Jadon Sancho, Phil Foden and Marcus Rashford) which are the envy of most of the rest of Europe and will have home advantage if they reach the sharp end of the tournament.
The reigning World Cup champions, France, are also one of the favourites. Les Bleus famously won Euro 2000 after claiming the global title two years prior and this generation has an even greater depth of talent for coach Didier Deschamps (who was skipper for their 1998 and 2000 back-to-back triumphs) to call on.
Also keep an eye out for Spain, who are bringing through some outstanding young talent; a Germany team which will be bringing to an end the 15-year tenure of coach Joachim Low; Belgium, who are stacked with top performers such as Kevin De Bruyne and Romelu Lukaku; and traditional European powerhouses Italy and the Netherlands, with the Azzurri and Oranje hoping to upset the odds this Northern Hemisphere summer.
Players to watch
– With 103 goals from 173 Portugal caps, Cristiano Ronaldo enters Euro 2020 as the tournament’s most prolific player. Even at 36, he remains a deadly presence in attack and ended the recent Serie A season with a Golden Boot-winning haul of 29 goals.
– Marcus Rashford has risen to prominence both on and off the field in the past year, with Euro 2020 representing an opportunity for him to cement a legacy as a generational talent for England.
– Turkish attacker Burak Yilmaz may not be a household name just yet, but he comes into the tournament on the back of a brilliant season in France, where he helped Lille knock Paris Saint-Germain off their perch as Ligue 1 champions.
– Romelu Lukaku is now arguably the most well-rounded and tactically efficient striker in European football, having brought his game to a new level under Antonio Conte at Internazionale, and Belgium could truly capitalise on their ‘golden generation’ if he continues racking up the goals.
– Kylian Mbappe’s heroics at the World Cup helped France claim glory at Russia 2018 – and he’s an even better, more experienced player now! The lightning quick striker is sure to terrorise defences through UEFA Euro 2020.
Did you know?
- Euro 2020 will have VAR (video assistant referees) for the first time in its history.
- Euro 2020 will be the 16th edition of the European Championships, which were first held in 1960 in France.
- Germany and Spain are the most successful teams in UEFA Euro history, with three titles apiece.
- Germany have played the most UEFA Euro matches (49), claimed the most wins (26) and both scored (72) and conceded (48) the most goals in the tournament’s history.
- Cristiano Ronaldo is set to extend his record as the player with the most matches (21) and minutes (1793) played in UEFA Euro tournaments.
- Ronaldo has also won the most matches (11 – a record he shares with Spain’s Cesc Fabregas and Andres Iniesta) and is set to become the first man to play in five tournaments (2004, 2008, 2012, 2016 and 2020). Spain’s Iker Casillas was a part of five Euro squads (2000, 2004, 2008, 2012 and 2016) but did not play in the first and last of them.
- Ronaldo also needs one goal to become the all-time top scorer in UEFA Euro tournaments. He currently shares the record of nine goals with France’s Michel Platini.
Maid, Kambwili appears in court for adduction of two children of Asian origin
A 28-year-old Lusaka maid and a 39-year-old man who abducted two children of Asian origin have pleaded guilty in the Magistrates’ Court.
Hellen Banda is jointly charged with businessman Chilumina Kambwili on two counts of abduction and one count of theft of a motor vehicle.
Banda and Kambwili are alleged to have abducted Sundrshan Patel and Njlakshi Patel, the unmarried girls under the age of 16 out of care and protection of their parent, Kumar D. Patel having lawful care against their will.
The offence was committed on September 13, 2021.
The two accused also stole a motor vehicle, a Toyota Allion registration number BAG 5479, valued at K110,000, the property of Patel.
They appeared before chief resident magistrate Dominic Makalichi and pleaded guilty.
Banda admitted that she took the children who are not her relatives.
She said she used to work at their parent’s house.
Banda had a tough time responding to a question on where she took the children but after being pressed for an answer, she said she took them to Kabanana compound in Lusaka where she stays.
She explained that she was fired from work for being absent and so she decided to take the children to her place.
And Kambwili admitted taking the children from their parents home without authority from the parents
He said the parents were not paying him his salary and so he took the children.
Asked whether he knew that it was an offence, he responded in affirmative.
The matter was adjourned to September 28 for facts and sentencing.
According to a police statement,
the abducted children were found in Lusaka’s Kabanana Compound in a rented house believed to have been occupied on Monday, 13th September, 2021, the day the children were reported missing.
More information will be availed at an appropriate time,” stated police spokesperson Esther Katongo.
IG warns criminals harrassing and torturing those perceived to be their political enemies
INSPECTOR general of Police Lemmy Kajoba has warned criminals harrassing and torturing those perceived to be their political enemies.
In a media statement, Mr Kajoba has directed officers around the country to bring to book criminals involved in the heinous crimes.
“Such conduct is evidenced by the reports which we are receiving as Zambia Police as well as videos circulating on social media.
I want to make it sink in the minds of all criminals behind such heinous acts or any other form of criminal activity that I will not allow such kind of lawlessness to happen under my watch. All those that would want to take the path of criminality under the guise of politics or any other motive should know that their time to answer to criminal charges is slowly catching up with them,” he said.
Mr Kajoba said his command will not in any way apply the law selectively but shall ensure that all persons are protected from criminality and that they enjoy their human rights and freedoms as enshrined in the Constitution.
He said police will ensure that law and order is maintained by reaching out to all those whose behaviour will be contrary to the provisions of the law irrespective of their status in society.
“From the disturbing incidences that have happened so far, we followed up the offenders and we have arrested about 10 suspects for various offences who will be appearing in Court and we are still searching for those that have gone into hiding,” Mr Kajoba said.
He also warned offenders who have temporarily managed to elude the long arm of the law is that they should not in any way feel safe where ever they may be hiding because soon they will be fished out and be made to answer for their criminal acts.
The IG further called on members of the public who could have fallen victim of such misconduct to quickly report to the nearest police so that perpetrators are brought to book.
“I therefore, expect police officers to be swift in responding to reports made by members of the public so that we can quickly get rid of criminals tormenting people in communities,” he said.
Man sets house on fire with wife and children inside it, leading to their deaths, police say
A MAN of Mporokoso district has been arrested in connection to the death of his wife, children and another person after he allegedly set their home on fire.
Police arrested Jonas Mwamba after he allegedly set ablaze a grass thatched house in which four people, among them his wife, were sleeping leading to their death.
Spokesperson Esther Katongo said police recieved a report that Beatrice Chanda aged 28 and her two children namely female juvenile Mirriam Kabwe aged nine and male juvenile Beanwel Musonda aged six and another unidentified person died in a grass thatched house after it was set ablaze by unknown persons.
She said preliminary investigations led to the arrest of Mwamba, the husband to Beatrice Chanda.
Mrs Katongo said Mwamba is detained in police custody for murder.
She said the couple is reported to have had marital disputes aftee Mwamba suspected his wife of having an extra marital affair and that he was in a tendency of issuing death threats to his wife.
“No information recieved by police so far is linking the deaths to politics as being insinuated on social media. If at all there are people with reliable information to what they are alleging, they should give that information to police,” he said.