Louise Quinn: What the Euros have to offer – great goals, fighting trolls and the female Haaland


I’d be delighted to see people jump on the women’s football bandwagon next month when the EURO finals kick off over the water.

What’s not to love about tournament football in the summer when the European Championships are being played close to home in England and all matches are being shown on RTE?

When I first started watching football it was so difficult to watch an event like the women’s championship, you watched a game or two on Eurosport or something, it just wasn’t available.

Even if Ireland aren’t there, it’s the best presence we can get for women’s football.

It’s very disappointing that the Republic didn’t qualify, but if the Bandwagoner see those games in the next four weeks, that’s when it all starts.

I just hope football is allowed to speak. With more attention from television and other media coverage comes more scrutiny. We all know how tough social media can be and I hope opinions focus on the football and not the personalities.

When certain people sit down to watch the Euros and then start talking about a mistake on social media or in the pub just because a woman is involved, it’s ridiculous and frustrating.

It won’t be a copy of the men’s game, the men’s European Championship, it probably never will be.

So I want people to give their thoughts on the games, give their opinions on what they’re watching, I want these football chats to be in the pub, in the car, at home on the couch, it’s on the radio Listen.

But constant personal criticism of players is not what we are here for, not what these players want to achieve at Euro.

It ruins the game for me, the same goes for men’s football – when you’re Harry Maguire and you’re constantly being bullied on social media it’s hard to recover and these players at the Women’s Championship are no different, you Just listen to the people around you, people who believe in you, who understand that you are in the national team squad, that you are in the finals of the Euros for a reason.

England have to deal with that, as hosts and one of the favourites, all eyes will be on them in England, so there’s pressure to deliver.

Knowing some of their players as well as I do they can handle it, but it’s still going to be a long month and I just hope the football can speak for itself.

Because the quality that is offered here is something very special. This is the best group of women footballers ever assembled in women’s football, the technical side of the game has improved and it will show.

As the month progresses it’s set to be one of the tightest competitions ever, the quality of the players spread across the teams is phenomenal – you could easily pick six teams that could go on and win.

Northern Ireland are clearly the least seeded side at the finals and they will struggle, they could struggle, but I know their players will also enjoy being written off by everyone and want to prove a point.

It is difficult for Northern Ireland to play their first game against Norway, who are one of the underdogs in the tournament. Norway is just quietly going about its business, happily under the radar, and they might be dark horses.

Ada Hegerberg was – controversially – absent from the scene for five years, she’s had her own protest at the way the national team has been treated by her FA but it seems she’s happier with the setup that things are now run better.

She won the first women’s Balon D’Or a few years ago, she reminds me of another Norwegian, Erling Haaland, they both have that certain attitude mixed with flair, she’s a poacher who can score anywhere.

It’s so hard to pick the two teams that stand on the last day. England should win for today’s opening day too but Austria have Viki Schnaderbeck who is superb and in Manuela Zinsberger they have one of the best goalkeepers in WSL and England have to deal with expectations so it’s going to be tough for them .

With the talent that England have they are well placed to win it and in Sarina Wiegman they have a manager who knows how to win the Euros.

I would expect England and Sweden to make it to the final and For Sweden, the disappointment of losing the Olympics will be a driving force for the Euros. Norway is a contender, Spain and Holland will not be too far away.

Ada Hegerberg could dominate the final, England’s Lauren Hemp is one of the best wingers I’ve played against and she’s getting better at 22 and it’s a pleasure to watch Vivianne Miedema from Holland. No shortage of reasons to watch and enjoy. Louise Quinn: What the Euros have to offer – great goals, fighting trolls and the female Haaland

Fry Electronics Team

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