Craze Of EURO Cup


Pallav Bhusal

As I sat in my living room with a group of friends, the tension in the air was palpable. The EURO Cup 2024 had begun, and in Nepal, the excitement was as intense as the match itself. Our country may be miles away from the European stadiums where the games are played, but the spirit of the EURO Cup had well and truly gripped us. Football fever, as we call it, had descended upon Nepal, transforming our quiet nights into thrilling scenes of sport, camaraderie, and sheer joy.

Every four years, the EURO Cup becomes a significant event for football fans worldwide, and Nepal is no exception. The buzz starts months before the actual tournament, with discussions about teams, players, and strategies dominating tea shop conversations and social media feeds. As the matches begin, the streets of Kathmandu and other cities light up with large screens set up in public squares, restaurants, and bars. It's a sight to behold, a testament to our passion for the beautiful game.

My first vivid memory of the EURO Cup dates back to 2000, but it was in 2004 that I truly fell in love with the event. Watching the games with my family and friends, I was struck by the sense of unity it brought. We supported different teams, my brother a staunch supporter of Germany, my best friend rooting for Italy, and I, cheering for England. Despite our differing allegiances, the experience of watching the matches together was unparalleled.

This year, as EURO 2024 kicked off, I found myself reminiscing about those earlier tournaments. The excitement was contagious. Each match night became a mini-festival, with homemade snacks, lots of laughter, and the occasional heated argument over referee decisions.

One of the most beautiful aspects of the EURO Cup madness in Nepal is how it transcends social and economic barriers. I remember walking through Thamel, a bustling neighbourhood in Kathmandu, and seeing people from all walks of life, shopkeepers, tourists, students, gathered around a single television, united by their love for football. The sense of community was heart-warming. Strangers became friends as they cheered for the same team or exchanged friendly banter supporting rival sides.

Technology has played a significant role in amplifying the EURO Cup experience in recent years. With the advent of social media, streaming services, and mobile apps, it has become easier to follow the games, discuss tactics, and share moments of joy and despair with a broader audience. Social media pages buzz with predictions, memes, and post-match analysis, making every fan feel like a part of a larger, vibrant community.

Despite the time difference, with many matches airing late at night or early in the morning, fans in Nepal remain undeterred. The sight of bleary-eyed individuals heading to work or school after a thrilling game is a common one during the tournament. The passion for football outweighs the inconvenience, showcasing our dedication to the sport. It's more than just a football tournament, it's a celebration of unity, passion, and shared experiences. As we continue to gather around our screens, cheering for our favourite teams and players, the EURO Cup madness serves as a beautiful reminder of the power of sport to bring people together.

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