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Sports

A Look at Past European Champions

The European Championships have been held since 1960. A review of previous finalists and winners shows nothing is a given at the top level of European soccer.

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Every four years another European Championship rolls around

Spain's victory in the European Championship final on June 29 is only the country's second since 1964. Germany has won what soccer fans and analysts claim is the sport's most difficult regional championship three times and has played in the final six times so far.

The European Championship dates back to 1960 when it was called the European Nations Cup. It is held every four years, between the World Cup.

During the Cold War, Germany was represented by both a West German and an East German team. The Soviet Union was a force to be reckoned with as was the former Yugoslavia.

A list of European Championship winners shows the ups and downs of the intense battle for the European title.

Former Euro finalists and winners

1960: Soviet Union vs. Yugoslavia 2-1 after extra time

1964: Spain vs. Soviet Union 2-1

1968: Italy vs. Yugoslavia 1-1 after extra time and then 2-0 after replay

1972: West Germany vs. Soviet Union 3-0

1976: Czechoslovakia vs. West Germany 2-2 after extra time and then 5-3 on penalties

1980: West Germany vs. Belgium 2-1

1984: France vs. Spain 2-0

1988: Netherlands vs. Soviet Union 2-0

1992: Denmark vs. Germany 2-0

1996: Germany vs. Czech Republic 2-0 after extra time

2000: France vs. Italy 2-1 after extra time

2004: Greece vs. Portugal 1-0

2008: Spain vs. Germany 1-0

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