Ou est la discotheque and everything else you need to know about France 2016

Need to spoof your way through a conversation. We’ve got you covered.

VAGUELY AWARE THAT Euro 2016 is starting this week and want to engage in polite conversation about it around your workplace but unwilling to deep dive just yet? This is the guide for you.

If you’re looking for more in-depth analysis, previews, quizzes, interviews and more, then check out #Euro 2016


EURO 2016 Five Unmissable Matches Matthias Schrader / AP/Press Association Images Matthias Schrader / AP/Press Association Images / AP/Press Association Images

For the first time, the tournament will be contested by 24 teams and is a long way from the first incarnation back in 1960 when just four teams (France, USSR, Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia) took part in the finals.

Spain, of course, are the defending champions while France are the hosts.

This year, the competing teams are:

Group A

Group B

Group C
Northern Ireland

Group D
Czech Republic

Group E

Group F


AP / Press Association Images AP / Press Association Images / Press Association Images

This year’s tournament will be the 15th edition of the European Championships with teams contesting for the right to claim the Henri Delaunay Trophy, named after the man who first proposed the tournament.

Sadly for the former French Football Federation secretary general, Europe didn’t get around to actually organising the first championships until three years after his death.

Nine different countries have claimed the crown of European champions with Spain and Germany both winning three, France two and USSR, Italy, Czechoslovakia, Netherlands, Denmark and Greece all claiming one apiece.


AP / Press Association Images AP / Press Association Images / Press Association Images

Nine different cities — Bordeaux, Lens, Lille, Lyon, Marseille, Nice, Paris, Saint-Etienne and Toulouse — will host this year’s tournament with the final taking place at the Stade de France.

Nancy was also supposed to host games but the renovation of the stadium was not approved.

Ireland will kick off their tournament against Sweden at the Stade de France before playing Belgium in Bordeaux and Italy in Lille in the their final group game.


PA Wire / Press Association Images PA Wire / Press Association Images / Press Association Images

It all gets under way this Friday, 10 June, when France host Romania at the Stade de France.

Ireland’s games take place on 13 June (5pm v Sweden), 18 June (2pm v Belgium) and 22 June (8pm v Italy).

The round of 16 kicks off on 25 June with the first of the quarter-finals on 30 June. The semi-finals will be played on the 6 and 7 of July with the decider taking place on Sunday, 10 July.


JB91 / YouTube

*Take deep breath*

Not only do you have some of the world’s best players like Cristiano Ronaldo, Andres Iniesta, Robert Lewandowski, Thomas Muller, Paul Pogba and Jon Walters playing for some of the world’s best teams like Belgium, Spain and Germany but it’s tournament football and who doesn’t love tournament football even if making it a 24-team tournament dilutes the whole thing or maybe having those extra teams means we could see another dark horse winner like Greece — but please not anywhere nearly as boring — or Denmark and maybe Ireland could be one of those teams and, at least until Sweden beat us 4-1, we can go into a tournament with the sort of hope and expectation that has people willfully mispronouncing the world ‘republic’ as ‘re-pub-a-lick’ and reminiscing about Euro 88, Joxer and credit union loans still unpaid.


Finally, ou est la discotheque?

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Quiz: How well do you remember Euro 2008?

Selecting an All-Ireland XI from the O’Neills’ Euro 2016 squads

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