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The football tournament Euro 2020 is happening between June and July 2021. It was changed to one year later because of the pandemic. Some of the best footballers in the world are playing. The Euros are the second most-watched football tournament in the world. 300 million people watched the Euro 2016 final.

During the tournament, players have to give interviews. At the interviews, there are sponsor names on the wall and sometimes sponsor drinks in front of the players. Cristiano Ronaldo went viral when he moved the Coca-Cola bottles that were in front of him. He held up his water and told people to drink that instead of Coca-Cola. This started a trend where other players started moving the drinks too. Paul Pogba plays for France. At his interview, there was a beer bottle at his table. Pogba does not drink alcohol for religious reasons. So, he moved the beer off the table so he wasn’t advertising it.

UEFA is the organiser of European football. They plan and host the Euros and other football tournaments like the Champions League. UEFA has now said that players who move drinks could be fined. They say that removing the drinks breaks the contract that UEFA and the players have with the sponsors. Players could be fined if they remove the drinks without a good reason. UEFA said that Pogba removing the drink for religious reasons is okay. But, players removing drinks because they don’t like them is not.

Difficult words

Tournament (n): A big competition with many contests to find one winner.

Sponsor (n): A person or company who helps pay for a sporting or entertainment event.

Trend (n): Something that has become popular or common.

Advertising (v/n): Pay money to bring attention to a certain thing.

Fine (v/n): Need to pay money because you did something wrong.

Activities

For listening practise, listen to the recorded article here:

American English Audio:

Match the Synonym!

1. TournamentA. Supporter
2. SponsorB. Bring attention.
3. TrendC. Competition
4. AdvertisingD. Pay for a wrong action.
5. FineE. Popular action.

True or False?

1. Euro 2020 is a basketball tournament. T / F

2. The Euros are the most-watched football tournament in the world. T / F

3. Less than 500 million people watched the Euro 2016. T / F

4. Cristiano Ronaldo told people to drink water instead of Coca-cola. T / F

5. UEFA said removing drinks for religious reasons is okay. T / F

Unscramble the sentence!

1. happening / Euro 2020 / football / tournament / The / is

2. are playing / Some / the / best / world / footballers in / of the

3. the / are / names / sponsor / there / At / interviews,

4. his / that / told / people / water and / He held / to drink / up

5. host / and / They / the / Euros / plan

Listening and Vocabulary

Listen to the article and fill in the words OR practice vocabulary and fill in the words.

American English Audio:

HappeningSponsorOrganiser
FinedReasonsWatched

The football tournament Euro 2020 is (1)_____________ between June and July 2021. It was changed to one year later because of the pandemic. Some of the best footballers in the world are playing. The Euros are the second most-watched football tournament in the world. 300 million people (2)__________ the Euro 2016 final.

During the tournament, players have to give interviews. At the interviews, there are sponsor names on the wall and sometimes (3)___________ drinks in front of the players. Cristiano Ronaldo went viral when he moved the Coca-Cola bottles that were in front of him. He held up his water and told people to drink that instead of Coca-Cola. This started a trend where other players started moving the drinks too. Paul Pogba plays for France. At his interview, there was a beer bottle at his table. Pogba does not drink alcohol for religious (4)___________. So, he moved the beer off the table so he wasn’t advertising it.

UEFA is the (5)____________ of European football. They plan and host the Euros and other football tournaments like the Champions League. UEFA has now said that players who move drinks could be fined. They say that removing the drinks breaks the contract that UEFA and the players have with the sponsors. Players could be (6)____________ if they remove the drinks without a good reason. UEFA said that Pogba removing the drink for religious reasons is okay. But, players removing drinks because they don’t like them is not.

Conversation Questions

Take turns speaking with a partner or try to answer on your own:

1. Did you find this article interesting? Why or why not?
2. Did you learn anything new from this article? If so, what?
3. What do you think of this story?
4. Is football popular in your country?
5. Have you been watching Euro 2020?
6. What do you think about players removing the drinks?
7. Do you think removing the drinks is damaging to the brands?
8. What do you think about the idea that players removing the drinks is actually better advertising for the companies?
9. Is soda or water more popular in your country?
10. Should UEFA fine the players if they continue to do this?
11. Is it better for players to be promoting healthy lifestyles instead of the sponsors?
12. Do you drink enough water?
13. Do you think the companies involved in this will be as angry as UEFA is?
14. What’s the most popular sporting event in your country?
15. What sport is your country best at?
16. Should Euro 2020 have been cancelled again because of COVID?
17. What do you think about spectators being allowed at Euro 2020 games?
18. Are spectators allowed at sports events in your country?
19. If Euro 2020 is held safely do you think other sports events will return to normal soon?
20. Should UEFA work with healthier sponsors in the future?