Mumbai4 hours agoAuthor: Rajkishore/Swapnil
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The UEFA European Football Championship ie Euro Cup is starting from today. 24 teams will face each other for the next 1 month in a tournament called the mini FIFA World Cup. For the first time in the history of the 60-year tournament, this tournament is being played in 11 countries. Cristiano Ronaldo’s team Portugal is the defending champion. The first match will be played between Turkey and Italy from 12:30 tonight. It will be telecast on Sony Ten channel.
In this episode, we talked to India’s star footballer Robin Singh. Robin believes that this time France, Italy and Portugal are the main contenders for reaching the semi-finals. On the other hand, England’s team can prove to be under dog. He said that Belgian star forward Romelu Lukaku can win the Golden Boot award, which means the most goalscorer.
Robin said that many people believe that the Euro Cup will be Ronaldo’s last tournament, but I want to see him play the World Cup next year. Robin Singh talks to Bhaskar about the prospects of different teams in the Euro Cup. Here are the highlights of the conversation..
Question: For the first time this tournament is being played in 11 countries. Do you think organizers will face problems in the time of Corona?
answer : Look, being a football player, I am happy that the Euro Cup is being played. If it wasn’t for this, maybe it would be difficult for me to spend my day and night. Not only football but every sport has been affected due to Corona.
Now that we are all facing Corona and everything is back on track, it is a big deal to have the Euro Cup. I hope this tournament goes well. Like a football fan, I would like to see which team will emerge victorious.
Question: Will Portugal team be able to defend the title? If not, which team is the contender from your point of view this time and why?
answer : Portugal is last year’s winning team. When you win, every team’s eyes are on you. Every team tries to beat you. Not only this, every team must have prepared accordingly. Portugal’s first Test is in the group match itself. Portugal is in Group F. It has teams like Germany, France and Hungary. France will definitely qualify for the next round. At the same time, either Germany and Portugal can travel further.
I think France is very strong this time. This time my favorite team is also there and I think this time France is a strong contender to win the Euro Cup trophy. The French team has a good mix of young and experienced players. His team is balanced. The team has many players like Benjamin Pavard, N’Golo Kante and Paul Pogba. This team has won the 2018 World Cup and is currently on peak.
Striker Karim Benzema (left) has returned to the French squad. The team has some deadly forward players like Mbappe, Griezmann, Jirud.
Question: In your view 4 teams which will be successful in reaching the semi-finals?
answer : See, apart from France, Germany, Portugal, England’s team is also very strong, this team can prove to be under dog. There are players like Luke Shaw and Calvin Phillips in the England team. The team of Italy and Belgium is also very good. There are players like Romelu Lukaku in Belgium.
There are goalkeepers like Gialuigi Donnarumma in Italy. Who are capable of stopping any kind of shot. There are also players like Nicolo Barella and Brian Cristante. The Italian team also has young and experienced players. In such a situation, we can say that these teams can become super powers.
Question: Next year is the FIFA World Cup and this year the mini FIFA World Cup i.e. Euro Cup 2020? What would you say about this?
answer : If we talk about football players and fans, then it is a good thing that after a good tournament there are other big tournaments. For Cristiano Ronaldo, it is being said that the Euro Cup may be his last tournament, but I want to see him play in the World Cup as well.
At the same time, this tournament will also be helpful from the point of view of the teams. The teams which will not be able to perform well here will have one more chance to prepare themselves and come into the big tournament.
Question: The popularity of European football is increasing. Which do you consider the best between Latin American football style and European style? What is the difference between the two?
answer : I don’t see much difference between the two footballs. Look, coaches make teams. The type of players in the team, the style will be the same. American football or European football, I believe teams and players should be better. The more goals the players score, the more fun they will have. I believe it should be Spanish football or European, just entertainment and skill. I look at my favorite players to see what I can learn from them.
Question: The last season of Euro Cup was watched by around 2 billion people. At the same time, there was a decrease in viewership in tournaments like Copa America? What do you think is the reason behind this?
answer : Look, the timing of the Copa America makes a difference. Although people like to see both, but due to timing, fans of many countries are unable to see. There is no dearth of talent and stars. Rather there is a difference in timing.
Question: Cristiano Ronaldo and Platini of France hold the record for the most 9-9 goals in this tournament? Will Ronaldo be able to hold the record for most goals?
answer : Ronaldo is my favorite player. I can say that Ronaldo will definitely break Platini’s record for most goals.
Question: Strongest contender to win Golden Boot?
answer : I think Lukaku is a strong contender for the Golden Boot. They are in full form now. He performed brilliantly in the Italian League while playing for Inter Milan. It remains to be seen whether they can continue their form in this tournament or not.
Question: Who do you think is the best footballer out of European football?
answer : If I talk about players from favorite teams, Lukaku from Belgium, Cristiano Ronaldo from Portugal, Benjamin Pavard from France, Kante and Pogba are my favourites.
Question: Which rising star do you consider to be the star footballer of the times to come?
answer : There are young players like Leroy Sen, Serge Gnabry in Germany’s team, who play very well.
Question: Changes have been made in the rules regarding Corona. Now 5 substitutes will be allowed? Do you think this will reduce the pressure on the players?
answer : This will also reduce the pressure on the players and we will be able to see more players on the field. Earlier only 3 players were seen.