Euro 2016: 5 jinxes that were & weren't broken at this edition
Football is a game that is often taken to the mystical level. This is evident from players being venerated as gods and stadiums being viewed as holy places to visit at least once in a lifetime. As with any other sport or facet of life, superstition plays a huge role in football.
The world game is being followed so keenly that the result of any fixture in the present is related with that of the past and conclusions are drawn. While few jinxes resurface from time to time, few are left undisturbed.
Let us take a look at the curses associated with teams at the European Championships as old as time itself, and if they stood the test of time.
Broken: Germany against Italy
Before Euro 2016, Germany had failed to beat the Azzuri in eight attempts in the finals of a major tournament.
Facing Italy in the quarter-finals of Euro 2016, Germany’s berth in the semi-finals was at stake. Mesut Ozil put Germany ahead before Jerome Boateng’s bizarre handball gave away a penalty and Leonardo Bonucci levelled things from the spot kick.
After the game finished 1-1 following extra time, it went on to penalties. It was an eventful and bizarrely unflattering shootout featuring 18 penalties, with the likes of Zaza, Pelle, Bonucci and Darmian missing for Italy while Ozil, Muller and Schweinsteiger failed to convert for Germany.
Jonas Hector stepped up to seal Germany’s victory and end their jinx against old rivals in major tournaments. And thus this so-called jinx was broken. And the ghost of 2006 was laid to rest.