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Euro 88 : The Football Purists' European Championship

Euro 88 : The Football Purists' European Championship

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Euro 88: The Football Purists’ European Championship delves into the last major international tournament on European soil before Italia 90 – a tournament of rancour and drama blessed by the presence of Gullit, Van Basten, Belanov, Protasov, Vialli, Klinsmann, Butragueño, Elkjær, Whelan and Robson. From England’s hypnotic self-destruction via an impressive qualification and Ireland’s heroic near-miss of a place in the semi-finals, to the Netherlands finally fulfilling their destiny in lifting the trophy against the Ukrainian-powered Soviet Union – this was a tournament that had it all. It was a glorious summer on the pitch with Rinus Michels, Valeriy Lobanovskyi, Franz Beckenbauer, Azeglio Vicini, Miguel Muñoz, Sepp Piontek, Jack Charlton and Bobby Robson bringing their nations to a high-rolling game of footballing poker.

But it was set against a volatile backdrop of violent intent on the terraces and a governing body that was struggling to maintain control. Euro 88 was anything but dull.

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