DELHI: The pre-quarter matches of the Euro Cup start today. The top 16 teams from the group stage have qualified for the quarterfinals. The top two finishers in each of the six groups in the tournament, as well as the top four third-place finishers, have qualified for the quarterfinals. This includes three teams each from groups A, C, D and F and two teams each from groups B and E in the last 16.
The first pre-quarter match will be between Group A runners – up Wales and Group B runners – up Denmark at 9.30pm tonight. When Wales go down to repeat their 2016 semi-final achievement, Denmark will go down in memory of their memorable leap in the 1992 Euro Cup. And the fact that their superstar Christian Eriksen came back incredibly qualified after the fall and qualified for the quarterfinals has given them confidence.
After losing the first two matches of the group, Denmark reached the pre-quarter with a superb performance against Russia in the final match. Denmark are the first team to reach the pre-quarters after losing the first two matches in the group. This is the first time since 2004 that Denmark has advanced to the group stage. Denmark have won their last three competitive matches against Wales. Wales, who reached the semi-finals of the Euro Cup last year, are hoping to make a similar leap this time around.
Italy will take on Austria in the second match today at 12.30 pm. Italy have advanced to the quarterfinals after winning all three of their Group A matches. Under Roberto Mancini, they showed off their unique defensive nature and attack football in this tournament. They never once forgot the defense, even when playing offensively. This is evidenced by the fact that they have conceded not a single goal in seven of the three games they have played. Italy are 30 games unbeaten in the Euros. Italy’s opponents in sparkling form are second – placed Austria in Group C. This is the first time Austria has reached the knockout round of a major championship.