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Euro 2024 official soundtrack: Our top five tracks

:Headline: Euro 2024 official soundtrack: Our top five tracks:
Ahead of the commencement of Euro 2024, Sports Mole picks out our top five tracks from this summer's official soundtrack.
Sports Mole

Music and football have a deeply intertwined relationship. From football-mad singers, to the songs that are playfully reworked into classic terrace chants, national anthems, and even the occasional footballer who tries their hand at rapping or singing, the two go hand in hand.

As such, UEFA have released an official soundtrack to the upcoming European Championships hosted in Germany, as well as an original and official song that they hope will capture the spirit of the tournament. Without further ado, here are our top five Euro 2024 official soundtrack songs.

Numbers 5-2

5. Waka Waka (This Time for Africa) - Shakira and Freshlyground

Kicking off our list is an interesting choice from UEFA, in Waka Waka. Shakira's collaborative effort with South African band Freshlyground was the official song of the 2010 World Cup.

Though it may be an unusual choice to place this song on the soundtrack, given this tournament is neither a World Cup, or being held in Africa, there is no denying Waka Waka's place in footballing folklore.

The song has long been considered one of the best official tournament songs ever produced, combining the global superstardom of Shakira with the authentic sounds of Freshlyground.

And in the Premier League this season, it has even become a terrace anthem, with Arsenal supporters serenading Kai Havertz to the tune of the hit song.

As Havertz is set to lead the line for hosts Germany, and comes into this tournament in his best form in years, do not be surprised to hear Waka Waka become the unlikely anthem of this tournament.

4. Under Pressure - Queen and David Bowie

Staying with collaborative efforts, one of the finest songs on the Euro 2024 official soundtrack is David Bowie and Queen's 1981 mega-hit, Under Pressure.

Bowie and Queen had both achieved staggering artistic and commercial success in the 1970s, so much so that their music is still adored by legions of fans, young and old, to this day.
Collaborations between such giant stars (who often have suitably giant personalities and egos) often fall a little flat, and can feel like cynical cash-grabs.

But this song bucked that trend. Between them, they penned an utterly relatable masterpiece about feeling squeezed, stretched and well, under pressure, from the demands of life, with superb and surprisingly danceable rock instrumentation.

Adidas recently brought the song back for their latest big-budget advert, starring the likes of Lionel Messi. With so much riding on players' performances, individually and collectively, plenty on the pitch will be feeling the pressure.

3. One Kiss - Calvin Harris and Dua Lipa

Moving forward almost 40 years, One Kiss by Calvin Harris and Dua Lipa became a surprise anthem for Liverpool supporters.

The popstar and DJ performed their hit song at the opening of the 2018 Champions League final, where the Reds took on Real Madrid. Over 30,000 Liverpool supporters had made the long journey to Kyiv for the final, and though the Reds ultimately lost 3-1, they did not leave entirely empty-handed.

Reds fans bellowed out every word with Dua Lipa, and the song has since become a celebratory anthem for them, with the singer saying "I felt very honoured". It is easy to see why. The incredibly catchy dance tune has lyrical themes that relate closely to football.

The core of the song is about how easy it can be to fall in love with someone, hence "one kiss is all it takes". And as many football fans will tell you, the beautiful game can have very much the same effect.

2. Song 2 - Blur

Blur made their big breakthrough in the mid-1990s riding the crest of the Britpop wave. They penned songs full of cheek and wit, backed by accessible instrumentation inspired by classic British rock.

But the band eventually grew tired of this way of doing things, and changed their sound quite dramatically. No song better epitomised this change than Song 2, released in 1997.

With vague, stripped back lyrics, a coarse and distorted guitar-heavy sound, and of course the iconic "woo-hoo!" in the hook, Blur accidentally produced something of a cult classic.

The song was picked up by the then-fledgling FIFA video game franchise for their World Cup '98 edition, where the song played in the cinematic intro every time the game was started up.

Since then, the song has become a football anthem, featuring in more recent FIFA games, in a myriad of fan-made player compilations, and blasted out over thousands of PA systems in stadiums across the globe.

Our #1 Euro 2024 official soundtrack song

1. Seven Nation Army - The White Stripes

For our number one pick though, we have gone for the near-ubiquitous Seven Nation Army. And there could really be no other choice. As well as being a very well-crafted song in its own right, the guitar riff performed by Jack White has become a terrace classic, transcending language and borders.

Supporters often chant along with drawn-out "oh" sounds to the simple yet fiendishly catchy and atmospheric riff, creating a cacophonous and imposing feel in the stadium. Club Brugge supporters were the first to this idea, when they sang the riff in a 2003 Champions League game with AC Milan.

The chant then travelled back to Italy with the Rossoneri, and by the 2006 World Cup, becoming the winners' unofficial theme.

Jack White himself said: "I am honoured that the Italians have adopted this song as their own. Nothing is more beautiful in music than when people embrace a melody and allow it to enter the pantheon of folk music."

The song has only grown in popularity and diversified in its usage since. It was played before every World Cup 2018 match, and in English-speaking nations, the "oh" sounds have been replaced with the names of players who happen to have five syllables in their full name.

The likes of Kevin De Bruyne, Santi Cazorla, Thiago Silva and even Andrea Pirlo during his time at NYCFC have all been serenaded with the anthem. Pirlo in particular brings the song beautifully full circle, as he was on the pitch when the Brugge fans first started singing that iconic riff.

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