The idea for an international European football tournament was first proposed in 1927 with the first tournament taking place in 1960 in France. Four teams competed in the finals which was won by the Soviet Union who beat Yugoslavia 2-1 in the final in Paris.
Spain hosted UEFA Euro 1964 and won the tournament after defeating Soviet Union 2-1 in the final at the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium in Madrid. Euro 1968 was hosted and won by Italy as the tournament became more popular.
Belgium hosted the 1972 tournament where West Germany beat the USSR 3-0 in the final. UEFA Euro 1976 was held in Yugoslavia and was the last with four teams competing in the final tournament and the last in which the hosts had to qualify.
The 1976 UEFA European Championship Final saw Czechoslovakia beat West Germany in a penalty shootout. The shootout was notable for Czech player Antonín Panenka scoring with a chipped penalty, the feat know known as a Panenka in his honour.
UEFA Euro 1980 saw the competition expanded to eight teams. Hosted in Italy, Euro 1980 featured a group stage with the winners of each groups contesting the final. West Germany won their second European Championship title after beating Belgium 2-1 in the final at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome.
The UEFA Euro 1984 tournament was held in France, the hosts winning their first major title with captain Michel Platini scoring an incredible nine goals in five 5 games including the opening goal in the final where France beat Spain 2-0.
The format changed at Euro 1984 with the top two teams in each group progressing to the semi-finals with the third place play-off abolished.
West Germany hosted UEFA Euro 1988 where the Netherlands beat USSR 2-0 at the Olympia Stadion in Munich. Dutch striker Marco van Basten scored an incredible volley from the right wing which remains one of the most memorable goals in football history.
UEFA Euro 1992 was held in Sweden and was won by Denmark who defeated Germany 2-0 in the final. Euro 1992 was the first tournament Germany contested as a unified nation and the first major tournament to have players names printed on the back of their jerseys.
England hosted UEFA Euro 1996 which saw the tournament increased from eight to 16 teams. Germany beat the Czech Republic 2-1 in the final thanks to the first golden goal in a major tournament that was scored by Oliver Bierhoff.
UEFA Euro 2000 was co-hosted by Netherlands and Belgium, the first tournament to be held by two countries. France beat Italy 2-1 in the final after extra time,Sylvain Wiltord equalising in the final minute of regulation time before David Trezeguet scored the winner in extra time.
UEFA Euro 2004 was held in Portugal as the hosts met Greece in the final. Greece had previously qualified for one World Cup and one European Championship, but they pulled off a huge upset by beating Portugal 1-0 in the final with a goal scored by Angelos Charisteas. Greece were listed at 150/1 in the outright betting market before Euro 2004 began.
The UEFA Euro 2008 tournament was co-hosted by Austria and Switzerland. Spain defeated Germany 1-0 in the final with nine Spanish players were picked for the team of the tournament.
UEFA Euro 2012 was co-hosted by Poland and Ukraine. Spain defeated Italy 4-0 in the final and became the first nation to defend a European Championship title and the first nation to win three major international tournaments in succession after winning Euro 2008 and the 2010 World Cup.
Spain striker Fernando Torres became the first player to score in two European Championship finals. Euro 2012 saw England's Frank Lampard score a goal that was incorrectly disallowed. Replays clearly showed the ball had crossed the goal line which was the catalyst for GLT (Goal-line technology).
Euro 2016 saw the European Championship expanded from 16 to 24 teams. France hosted the tournament where they contested the final against Portugal. Portugal qualified for the knock-out phase despite finishing third in its group and failing to win a game, but they beat a heavily favoured France 1-0 in the final thanks to a goal from Eder in the 109th minute. Cristiano Ronaldo was forced off injured in the 25th minute as Portugal won their first major tournament.
The Euro 2020 tournament was rescheduled to 2021 due to the corona virus pandemic that brought much of the world to a standstill. Euro 2021 will be hosted in 12 countries across Europe including Azerbaijan, Denmark, England, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Republic of Ireland, Romania, Russia, Scotland and Spain. The semi-finals and Euro 2021 Final will be held at Wembley Stadium in London, England.