To celebrate the UEFA Euro 2016 in France, we’ve made a list of the 10 best Euro and World Cup Anthems EVER. Turns out, most anthems have a sexy southern charm.
1- World Cup 1998 France: La Copa de la Vida (The cup of life) – Ricky Martin
Having topped the worldwide charts for weeks and having entered the Billboard Hot 100 in 1998, it’s safe to say that this was one of the most successful World Cup Anthems in anthem history. Yes, Ricky Martin already had a music career before he was livin’ la vida loca (released 1999).
2- World Cup 2010 South-Africa: Waka Waka (this time for Africa) – Shakira
Although many South-Africans were disappointed that FIFA chose an international popstar over a native artist, this cheerful song even got hard-core male football fans to shake their booty! Or maybe it was the video clip that got the fans going as it features various footballers like Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.
3- World Cup 2010 South-Africa: Wavin’ Flag – K’naan
Although the song wasn’t selected as the official World Cup 2010 Anthem, Coca-Cola decided to bombard the song as their own promotional anthem. Smart move as the hit made it into the top ten in over twenty different charts worldwide!
4- Euro Cup 2004 Portugal: Força – Nelly Furtado
It may not have been your first pick, but it will revive your 2004 summer memories! Nelly wrote this song while touring in Portugal. People nicknamed her “força”, which means “Keep going” or “Kick ass”.
5- Euro Cup 2008 Austria-Switzerland: Can you hear me – Enrique Iglesias
Enrique went all electro pop on us in the bid to get us pumped for the Euro Cup of 2008. Although critics did not take to the song, UEFA believed Enrique was the perfect candidate because he “is an international star who is passionate about football and who has European roots”.
6- World Cup 2014 Brazil: Dar Um Jeito (We will find a way) – Carlos Santana ft. Wyclef
Sadly enough, Brazil did not ‘find a way’ and bit the dust against the Germans.
7- World Cup 2014 Brazil: We are one – Pitbull ft. Jennifer Lopez
Here we go again, throw some sexy Spanglish lines together to create yet another exotic chart topper (Pitbull’s speciality by the way): “Jenny, dale!”. Apparently Jenny didn’t dale it enough, because the Brazilians thought the song lacked a Brazilian feeling.
8- World Cup 1990 Italy: Un’estate Italiana – Gianna Nannini & Edoardo Bennato
Oh boy, were they melancholic in those days… Or maybe it’s just the Italians.
9- Euro Cup 2000 Netherlands-Belgium: Campione – E-type
This one takes you right back to the 90’s, dance dance dance!
10- 1998 Worldcup- Three Lions – The Lightening Seeds & Frank Skinner
Let’s take a break from Latino anthems with Britain’s greatest football anthem of all time, ‘Football’s Coming Home’. The song was released in 1996 as a single by the Brit pop band, The Lightning Seeds and singer Frank Skinner to celebrate England’s participation and defeat in the European Championships. Two years later the single soared during the World Cup and became one of the biggest anthems of all time. The lyrics, unlike most football songs told of how the team’s repeated failures have never stopped fans from believing that England could win again one day.
11- World Cup 1986 Mexico: “Hot Hot Hot” – Arrow
Written and recorded by Montserratian artist Arrow, “Hot Hot Hot” is easily one of the biggest selling soca hits in history. It was later covered by David Johansen under his persona Buster Poindexter. His version instantly became a dancehall favorite. The contagious tune, later on, became the theme song at the 1986 FIFA World Cup in Mexico.
12- Euro Cup 1988: “All The Way” – England Squad
All the Way serves as England Squad’s fourth sports tournament anthem, following “We’ve Got the World at Our Feet” two years earlier. Co-written by Stock, Aitken, and Waterman, the song received mixed reviews with critics calling it ‘dreadful’.
13- World Cup 2018 Russia: “Live It Up!” – Nicky Jam, Will Smith and Era Istrefi
Diplo produced this upbeat reggae club favorite in collaboration with The Picard Brothers and Free School. It debuted on May 25, 2018 and was chosen as the official theme for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia. The chart-topping beat climbed to the No. 1 spot in Panama and entered the top 10 in Hungary, Bolivia, Poland, and Argentina.
14- Euro Cup 2000: “Jerusalem” – Fat Les
The world might remember them for “Vindaloo,” the unofficial song for the 1998 FIFA World Cup in France. Later on, the British band recorded a rendition of William Blake’s “Jerusalem” for the 2000 Euro Cup co-hosted by Belgium and the Netherlands. The recording featured a 60-piece orchestra and 4 different choirs.
15- World Cup 2014: “La La La” (2014) – Shakira
Shakira followed up her second World Cup song, “Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)” with “La La La,” her third World Cup theme song. The track achieved commercial success and earned excellent reviews from music critics.