Will Italy Be Disqualified as Euro 2020 Winners as Alleged?

By Naomi Wanjiku

This Facebook post claims that Italy will be disqualified as the Euro 2020 winners because they used a player who was yellow-carded in the quarter-finals.

The post wrongly asserts that the cautioned Italian player should have missed the last two games — the semi-finals and finals.

“UEFA (the Union of European Football Associations) officials could disqualify Italy from Euro 2020, meaning England could become euro champions!” the Facebook post writes, attributing this information to the BBC website.

Two Italian players — Marco Verratti and Domenico Berardi — were yellow carded in the Euro 2020 quarter-finals against Belgium. Italy proceeded to the finals after beating Belgium by a goal (2–1).

Verratti was part of Italy’s starting line-up in the Euro 2020 finals, and Berardi came on as a substitute. Italy beat England in the finals on penalties.


However, is it true that Italy made an offense by allowing players who had been issued with yellow cards in the quarter-finals to participate in the Euro 2020 finals? We verified.

According to the Euro 2020 rules, single cautions acquired during the matches in the final tournament expire at the end of the quarter-finals. Hence they are not carried forward to the semi-finals.

So when can one be suspended from participating in the finals?

“A player can only be suspended for the final if they receive a red card in the semi-finals,” reads part of the rules.

A player can also be suspended in the next match after two cautions in two different matches or after four cautions.

By the end of the quarter-finals, the two players had one yellow card each, meaning that it was not carried forward to the semi-finals or the finals. No Italian player got two cards in the semi-finals.

Therefore, Italy committed no offense by allowing the two players to participate in the finals and hence there would be no reason to invalidate the country’s Euro 2020 win.

Additionally, while the post attributes the BBC website as its source, PesaCheck looked this up on BBC World and BBC Sport and could not find any information regarding the potential stripping of Italy’s win nor England’s ascent.

We also checked the BBC’s corrections and clarifications page and found that the media house had not flagged content with the said claim.


PesaCheck has looked into a Facebook post claiming that Italy will be disqualified as the Euro 2020 winners because they used a player who had been booked in the quarter-finals and found it to be FALSE.

This story was produced by Africa Uncensored in partnership with Code for Africa with support from Deutsche Welle Akademie.

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