Danish goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel has laughed off the possibility of “football coming home” ahead of Wednesday’s Euro 2020 semi-final with England, asking a reporter if the European Championships has “ever been home”.
Football fans of a certain vintage in and around England will no doubt remember Frank Skinner and David Baddiel’s ‘Three Lions’ song which predicted that football was “coming home” ahead of the 1996 iteration of the European Championships held on English soil.
Football, in fact, did not come home during that tournament after current England boss Gareth Southgate missed a vital penalty in the semi-final with Germany – just six years after they suffered the exact same fate at the 1990 World Cup when they once again failed to bring football “home”.
Now, after several further failed attempts to make good on Skinner & Baddiel’s now quarter of a century old prophecy, the song is once again being sang in the stands at England games throughout the European Championships – but Schmeichel was keen to note that football has never been “home“, at least in the context of the European Championships.
Kasper Schmeichel was asked what it would mean to stop football from 'coming home' … 😅 pic.twitter.com/0AAwNr8J0L
— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) July 6, 2021
“You may have heard the phrase ‘It’s coming home’ – what would it mean for you to stop it from coming tomorrow night?” Schmeichel was asked by a British reporter, with him visibly grimacing when he heard the ‘coming home’ part of the question.
“Has it ever been home?” Schmeichel shot back. “Have you ever won it?“
“In 1966 it was home,” replied the reporter.
“Well, was that not the World Cup?“
Schmeichel is, of course, correct in stating that England have never won the European Championships – and you may just recall hearing about England’s World Cup win 55 years ago, principally because they have rarely stopped talking about it since.
And of the two teams who will take to Wembley turf on Wednesday evening, just one of those sides can boast having won this competition in the past – with Denmark doing just that in 1992.
So whether or not football does indeed come “home” remains to be defined, in part at least, by whatever takes place on the pitch in London tomorrow evening – but if England once again fall short, perhaps it is time to retire the ‘Three Lions’ song lest it be forever associated with failure.
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