All geared up for Euro 2024


Pedestrians passing by the dwp Bar KL decorated with participants flags and live screening banner of the UEFA Euro 2024 at Jalan Tun Razak on June 13.—AZMAN GHANI/The Star

PETALING JAYA: Malaysian football fans are all hyped up for the kick-off of the Euro 2024 tournament today (Friday, June 14).

Held after the last tournament saw the Covid-19 pandemic restricting crowds and gatherings, many are eager to head out to rejoin their friends and families to watch the games.

ALSO READ: INTERACTIVE: Mad about Euro 2024

And their favourite hangouts? The local mamak, by a hands down.

Management executive Chalee Nai Kin said he is really looking forward to the drama and excitement of Euro 2024.

Management executive Chalee Nai Kin, 30.Management executive Chalee Nai Kin, 30.

"Finally, something to look forward to since the end of the English Premier League (EPL) while we wait for the new season.

"The thrill of seeing underdogs upset giants, the nail-biting penalty shootouts, and those moments of sheer magic that make you jump off the couch and smash expensive things around you due to the excitement," he said.

ALSO READ: What's at stake for the teams in Euro 2024?

The 30-year-old is also eagerly anticipating all the "professional" reviews and commentary on social media by "friends who suddenly become football experts overnight".

"The friendly banter among friends and the hilarious match predictions with colleagues in the office just adds to the fun.

A motorcyclist passing by the flags of the participants country taking part in Euro 2024 tournament at Souled Out Hartamas on June 11.—AZMAN GHANI/The StarA motorcyclist passing by the flags of the participants country taking part in Euro 2024 tournament at Souled Out Hartamas on June 11.—AZMAN GHANI/The Star

Bring on the games, the goals, and the glorious unpredictability!," said Chalee, who is really looking forward to the big clash, Spain vs Italy, on June 21.

While he will be watching the matches from the comfort of his home, especially since most of the good games are scheduled for 3 am local time, he will most likely end up at a mamak with good friends for the final.

"I'll be rooting for Spain, but I've always had a soft spot for England - still hoping they can finally bring it home.

"Honestly, though, France and Germany are looking like the favourites this time around," said Chalee, admitting that this tournament is going to be a rollercoaster.

Entrepreneur Amir Zain, 35, (with pix) said what he loves the most during such tournaments is the “get-together time” with close friends and family.

"As the matches will take place in different time zones, it is such a good feeling to be able to stay up late at night with your close friends and family members, especially for married men!

"It’s like a temporary license to be 'bujang," said Amir, who will be watching the games at his local mamak.

"Mamak would be the best place! No protocol and 1Malaysia vibes," he said, adding that France has always been his choice due to the diversity of race, religion and political movement of its players.

"But an underdog team like Croatia is also a great team to support," he added.

Lecturer Nashriq Ruslan, 37, is looking forward to young players "strutting their stuff in big games" during the tournament.

A big fan of teenagers, English player Kobbie Mainoo and France's Warren Zaire-Emery, he said he wants both of them to do well in this tournament.

"(This is because) age is just a number," said Nashriq, who has a soft spot for France and England.

Nashriq Ruslan, 37, lecturer, Shah AlamNashriq Ruslan, 37, lecturer, Shah Alam

"I hope England wins this one and end their curse in a major tournament once and for all. It's long overdue," he said, adding that now that his two sons are old enough to understand the game, he would be watching the tournament at home.

Besides anticipating the "triump of the underdogs", student Joshua Jeremiah Jebaretnam, 19, is looking forward to the opening ceremony.

"I would have backed England, but for the fact that they did not choose my favourite player, Marcus Rashford, I decided to switch my support to Germany instead.

I believe that Germany has a better chance of winning Euro 2024 because the game is held on their home ground," he said, adding that he would join his friends at the mamak to watch the matches.

Senior IT technician Kevin Thomas Abraham is looking forward to watching the game with friends, celebrating the goals and supporting his team, England, to go all the way.

"I am planning to watch at home or at the mamak with friends," said the 31-year-old from Klang.

A financial analyst, who only wants to be known as Idzham, said he will be watching the games on the instant messaging app Discord.

Financial analyst, Idzham, 25.Financial analyst, Idzham, 25.

"But definitely for the key games, I'll watch it at our trusty mamak as per tradition.

"I'm looking forward to another England disaster class under Southgate as they never seem to learn from their mistakes from previous Euros," said the France fan, who is also an admirer of French forward Kylian Mbappe.

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Malaysian football fans , Euro 2024 ,

   

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