”Euro 2016” in Addis Ababa - Under 15 Soccer Tournament

On the occasion of the Euro Championship in France (10 June – 10 July), the German Embassy Addis Ababa, in cooperation with the Ethiopian Football Federation, the EU Delegation and eight bilateral Embassies in Addis Ababa, organized the “Euro 2016” in Addis Ababa. Eight teams from schools and social projects in Addis Ababa competed in that football tournament on Saturday, 11 June. Each team had been nominated by a European Embassy to play as its “National Team from Addis Ababa”. The following teams competed in a seven-a-side-tournament in the National Stadium of Addis Ababa:

Team Australia (as a special guest): St Yared School

Team Czech Republic: Addis Zemen FC

Team Denmark: German Church School

Team France: Lycée Guébré-Mariam

Team Germany: German Embassy School

Team Ireland: A Selection of different Schools

Team Italy: Italian School Addis Ababa

Team Netherlands: The Sahle Selassie Team

More than 200 players and spectators enjoyed the competitive and cheerful atmosphere in the stadium. Group A was won by the Netherlands (The Sahle Selassie Team), whilst France (the Lycée Guébré-Mariam) secured the second position on goal difference, before Germany (German Embassy School) and Australia (St Yared School). Group B ended up with Ireland (Selection of various schools) winning ahead of Italy (Italian School Addis Ababa), Czech Republic (Addis Zemen FC) and team Denmark (German Church School).

After two heated semi-finals of the Netherlands vs Italy and Ireland vs. France, the Netherlands played France, which had beaten Ireland on penalties. In a breath-taking final, the Netherlands secured the victory by 2:0 and won the Cup. Further awards were given to the best female (from Team Netherlands) and male player (from Team France), the best scorer (from Team Netherlands) and the best goalkeeper (from Team Italy). 

During the trophy ceremony, the Deputy Head of the European Delegation, Mrs Terhi Lehtinen, stressed the important role that sports and youth development has in Ethio-European relations. She congratulated all teams to their tremendous efforts, in the spirit of tolerance, unity and fair-play.

The tournament aimed at raising awareness for social projects in Addis Ababa, sharing European values of unity in diversity, respect and solidarity, and at bringing fun to almost 100 kids participating in the tournament. All teams had been given shirts from the respective embassy in their national colours, and included both boys and girls between 13 and 15 years. The costs of the event were shared between the European Delegation and the Embassies of Australia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands.