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The Three Lions, Dentist's chair and memories of Euro 96 | Story of the Euros

Ciaran Bradley
Ciaran Bradley

15:13 17 Jun 2021

As UEFA Euro 2020 kicks into gear, OTB Sports looks back at a tournament past: Euro 96, as part of our ‘Story of the UEFA European Championships’ series in association with Heineken - official beer partner of UEFA Euro 2020.

"It was quite important to me that we didn't do a rousing, normal football song," Ian Broudie of The Lightning Seeds said of Three Lions.

"We wanted to do something that wasn't too nationalistic; it's a song about losing, and how you feel when you lose football games."

Martin Lipton, chief football correspondent at The Sun, elaborates on the run-up to the tournament amid the famous 'Dentist's Chair' in Hong Kong.

"Those who were there in the China Jump club will tell me that a number of senior England players were somewhat the worse for wear when they came into another club where the media were.

"They'd been told to go and let themselves off the leash for one last hurrah. I don't think anyone really expected things to go as awry as they did."

Uri Geller believes that England had a helping hand from the beyond, from his vantage point above Wembley in a helicopter.

"You cannot debunk the fact that I moved the football away from Gary McAllister's foot. I screamed out '1, 2, 3 - move!'

"The ball rolled away, he missed the penalty, Seaman caught the ball and England won."

Lipton believes that the minute between that penalty miss and the famous goal from Paul Gascoigne was the turning point for English fortunes on home turf.

"They were pretty awful against Switzerland and scraped a 1-1, they weren't very good in the first half against Scotland.

"As it was, they go down the other end and score, they have the celebrations with Gascoigne and Sheringham revelling in what had gone on in China and making a joke of the whole thing.

"Suddenly, England had real momentum going into that game against Holland."

Broudie believes that there was a shift in mood alongside that shift in the team's fortunes, as summed up by Three Lions.

"I did feel like there was a change in the air, it felt a good spirit and Three Lions captured that to a degree.

"It was a nicer way of being a football fan and it was like a crossover from fighting at games, it felt like that era was done. It was nice to be a part of all that.

"It was a beautiful summer."

And then Andreas Moller.

Can England expect again this summer?

The story of the UEFA European Championships on OTB Sports with Heineken – official beer partner of UEFA Euro 2020. Finally together to be rivals again. Drink responsibly, visit drinkaware.ie

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Broudie England Euro 96 Germany Ian Broudie Martin Lipton Teddy Sheringham UEFA Euro 1996

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