european football championship 1980

The 1980 UEFA European Football Championship final tournament was the sixth European Championships held in Italy between 11 and 22 June 1980. This was the first tournament to feature eight teams. West Germany defeated Belgium 2-1 in ther final at the Stadio Olimpico, Rome claiming their second title.

Host selection

With the tournament expanded to eight teams, UEFA decided to choose a host in advance. On 17 October 1977 UEFA announced that England, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Switzerland and West Germany had expressed interest in hosting the 1980 UEFA European Football Championship.

UEFA's Organizing Committee decided to put England and Italy forward as hosts and on 12 November 1977 UEFA's Executive Committee announced that Italy had been chosen unanimously.


Thirty one of UEFA's 34 members entered the qualification tournament for the 1980 UEFA European Football Championship. Albania and Liechtenstein did not enter with Italy qualifying automatically as hosts.

The teams were drawn into three groups of five teams and four groups of four teams. The group winners would qualify for the tournament proper.

Wales were drawn in Group 7 alongside West Germany, Turkey and Malta. This was the first time Wales had played Turkey and Malta.

Uefa qualifying group 7

no.datescorescorers (wales)venue 
34425/10/1978Wales 7-0 MaltaO'Sullivan, Edwards (4), M Thomas, FlynnRacecourse Ground, WrexhamECQ
34529/11/1978Wales 1-0 TurkeyDeacyRacecourse Ground, WrexhamECQ
 25/02/1979Malta 0-0 West Germany Empire Stadium, GżiraEC
 18/03/1979Turkey 2-1 Malta İzmir Atatürk Stadyumu, İzmirEC
 01/04/1979Turkey 0-0 West Germany İzmir Atatürk Stadyumu, İzmirEC
34602/05/1979Wales 0-2 West Germany Racecourse Ground, WrexhamECQ
35002/06/1979Malta 0-2 WalesNicholas, FlynnEmpire Stadium, GżiraECQ
35217/10/1979West Germany 5-1 WalesCurtisMüngersdorfer Stadion, KölnECQ
 28/10/1979Malta 1-2 Turkey Empire Stadium, GżiraEC
35321/11/1979Turkey 1-0 Wales İzmir Atatürk Stadyumu, İzmirECQ
 22/12/1979West Germany 2-0 Turkey Parkstadion, GelsenkirchenEC
 27/02/1980West Germany 8-0 Malta Weserstadion, BremenEC

Group standings

1.West Germany642017110

Wales and the 1980 European Championship

Wales were drawn in Group 7 alongside West Germany, Turkey and Malta. This was the first time Wales had played Turkey and Malta.

The campaign got off to a thumping start as Wales thrashed Malta 7-0 at The Racecourse in the first ever meeting between both sides. It was Wales' biggest winning margin since beating Ireland 11-0 in 1888 and Ian Evans became only the fourth player to score four goals in a match and the first Welshman to score an international hat-trick since Cliff Jones in 1963.

A 1-0 win over Turkey saw Wales top the group with a 100% record and in buoyant mood when West Germany, the group favourites, could only manage two goalless draws in their opening matches in Malta and Turkey.

However West Germany were too strong for Wales and secured their first victory of the campaign at The Racecourse.

A 2-0 win in Malta kept Welsh hopes alive and top of the group as they headed to face West Germany in Köln.

However Wales were humilated in Germany, losing 5-1 with Alan Curtis' late goal the only consolation in a match which saw John Toshack win the last of his 40 caps for Wales.

Defeat to Turkey in İzmir extinguished Wales' faint hopes of qualification but the match was overshadowed by Byron Stevenson's red card after he allegedly fractured opponent Mustafa Denizli's cheekbone. Stevenson was handed a four-and-a-half year European Championship ban.

Players used during qualifying

Wales used 23 players during the campaign with Dai Davies and Leighton Phillips playing every minute of every game during the campaign whilst Mickey Thomas played some part of every game.

Robbie James made his debut in the opening match of the campaign against Malta.

Byron Stevenson became the second Welshman to be sent off in an international match after he received a red card for allegedly fracturing opponent Mustafa Denizli's cheekbone in the final match of the campaign in Turkey. Stevenson was handed a four-and-a-half year European Championship ban.

George Berry  90 7590
Les Cartwright14     
Alan Curtis  90909090
Dai Davies909090909090
Gordon Davies     71
Nick Deacy 90    
Phil Dwyer 90 190 
Ian Edwards90 59  25
Carl Harris90909065  
Brian Flynn9090 8990 
Leighton James 90    
Robbie James90 179090 
Joey Jones909090901590
John Mahoney  90909019
Peter Nicholas   909090
Peter O'Sullivan76     
Malcolm Page90 90   
Leighton Phillips909090909090
Byron Stevenson9090 909070 red
Mickey Thomas909090252690
John Toshack  319064 
Ian Walsh     65
Terry Yorath 9073  90


12 pts for a win / 1 pt for a draw