The defender expressed frustration after his team were forced to cross the continent to play their games – when their fans were unable to travel.
Welsh defender Chris Gunter has lambasted Euro 2020 organizers after his country’s exit from the tournament, saying the setting up of the competition was a “joke”.
Robert Page’s side were eliminated in the round of 16 on Saturday after a 4-0 loss to Denmark in Amsterdam, having already made two of their three group matches 2,600 miles away in Baku and the third in Rome.
Not only did Wales fly the air miles, but Covid’s restrictions meant their fans couldn’t travel in large numbers for any of their matches – much to Gunter’s frustration.
What did Gunter say?
Reacting to the elimination of Wales, Gunter wrote on Instagram: “So this month’s trip is over. We didn’t deserve that score but who said life was fair.
“It hurts like crazy, but hurting with some of my best friends and best lunatics I’ve shared a locker room with for years makes things a little easier. And sharing it with a nation that all feels the pain. same thing done it is even easier.
“Canceled before an air bag was launched, 3,000 miles from our home. Every nation had fans everywhere they went. You and we deserved more of this tournament set-up joke, but who said life was fair.
“Cry, but smile as we dine at the head table again. And smile even more as we come back and be the ones with the stadium full to sing our anthem we all deserve.”
Despite his obvious frustration upon their exit, Gunter believes the future is bright for Welsh football.
“This country is in good hands with the team we have, trust me. I would go into the trenches with every member of this team and staff,” he added.
“Be sad, but be proud. We’re only three million, but we’re the luckiest, and you don’t know it. Suck it, hold your head up. Everything will be fine, trust me.
“Really thank you for all the support and love. See you soon. Gunts.”
The bigger picture
For the first time in its history, the European Championship is taking place across the continent rather than in a single country.
This format means that some countries should probably travel more than others, especially with the host sites stretching from Glasgow to Baku.
Wales can therefore be unhappy to have been placed in a group that involved so much travel.
Then there’s the impact of the Covid pandemic – something no one could have predicted when the tournament format was designed – which, again, may have hampered Wales more than some. other countries.
Travel restrictions to guard against the spread of the virus meant Welsh supporters were urged not to travel to Baku or Rome, while the Dutch government said it would not allow those traveling from the country of Wales to watch the game against Denmark.
This meant that the Danish fans outnumbered the Welsh fans by far inside the Johan Cruyff Arena, where they roared their team to a convincing victory.