In association football, the England 6s and 2s curse refers to a pattern in the sequence by which the England national football team have been eliminated from either the FIFA World Cup or the UEFA European Football Championship via a penalty shoot-out, after their first elimination by this method at the 1990 FIFA World Cup. This sequential pattern was first noted on social networking services  shortly after England's elimination from the UEFA Euro 2012 tournament.
The English national football team have been eliminated via a penalty shoot-out at the following tournaments:
- 1990 FIFA World Cup (3-4 vs. West Germany - Semi-finals)
- UEFA Euro 1996 (5-6 vs. Germany - Semi-finals)
- 1998 FIFA World Cup (3-4 vs. Argentina - Round of 16)
- UEFA Euro 2004 (5-6 vs. Portugal - Quarter-finals)
- 2006 FIFA World Cup (1-3 vs. Portugal- Quarter-finals)
- UEFA Euro 2012 (2-4 vs. Italy - Quarter-finals)
A basic sequential pattern can be calculated using the years in which a penalty shoot-out loss was responsible for the English team's elimination. Since the 1990 FIFA World Cup loss to West Germany, England have been eliminated from European tournaments via a penalty shoot-out at recurring intervals of 6 and 2 years.
Should this sequence continue the next elimination for England as a result of a penalty shoot-out would occur during the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil followed by the UEFA Euro 2020 tournament (and so forth).
- ↑ "Just spotted a terrifying England pattern". Twitter. June 24, 2012. https://twitter.com/ianaelliott/status/217071566255689728.
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