The European Championships produces some of the most iconic images and greatest football players of all time. But not only that, the Euros also debuted some of the most iconic match ball in history today. Naming and glorifying Euro match ball was not introduced during its first two editions. Here are the things you need to know about every European Championship match ball in history:
Questra Europa (EURO 1996)
For the first time, the Euros was held with 16 instead of eight teams in 1996. Oliver Bierhoff scored the first golden goal in history, a method used during the extra time to determine the winner of the match. The match ball for this iconic goal was the Questa Europa, the first official EURO match ball that features a colour. The EURO ’96 design came with lions and red roses, symbolic of hosts England.
Terrestra Silverstream (EURO 2000)
The finals of Euro 2000 were co-hosted, for the first time, by Belgium and the Netherlands. The title and design of this ball related to the waterways of host countries Belgium and the Netherlands. This match ball features a breakthrough in manufacturing with its new outer layer that makes the ball softer to the touch, easier to control and more accurate.
Roteiro (EURO 2004)
In 2004, Greece’s won their maiden title in Portugal. Roteiro, translates as ‘road map’ or ‘navigation chart’, is a match ball referred to the discoveries made by Portuguese explorers – notably Vasco da Gama. For the first time in a major tournament, every individual match ball was inscribed to display the names of the teams, the date, the stadium and the coordinates of the centre circle.
Europass (EURO 2008)
This match ball is made of 14 panels instead of the traditional 32 panels. It has a special texture on its surface which was designed to provide goalkeepers and outfield players with even more grip. A silver Europass Gloria ball was deployed for the final where Spain’s Fernando Torres scored the only goal to win the finalthat ended Spain’s ended their trophy drought.
Tango 12 (EURO 2012)
The 2012 edition saw Spain successfully defended their title, becoming the first team to win two consecutive European Championships. It is also the year when the Tango series of the 1980s returned. Tango 12 was designed with a coloured outline inspired by the flags of co-hosts Poland and Ukraine. It has graphics that celebrates decorative art of paper cutting of both host countries.
Beau Jeu, Fracas (EURO 2016)
The Beau Jeu, translates as ‘beautiful game’, was the Euro 2016match ball that has blue, white and red in honour of hosts France’s Tricolour flag. The design has integrated silver highlights in reference to the Henri Delaunay trophy. It was used for the group stage, after which it was replaced by the Fracas, marking the first time in the tournament’s history that two styles of official ball were used.
Uniforia (EURO 2020)
Derived from a combination of “unity” and “euphoria”, the Uniforia is designed to celebrate the inclusiveness of the tournament as it is slated to take place across 12 different European countries and mark the competition’s 60th anniversary. The design shows bold, black brush-stroke style lines running across the ball as reflective of the competition’s new transcontinental format.