Euro 2012 reaches its climax on Sunday, when holders Spain take on Italy in the final. But as the tournament draws to a close, success is not just being measured in terms of who is crowned champion.
The sport's governing body in Europe, UEFA, is also assessing how the three-week competition has been seen both within and beyond the continent's borders.
Television viewing figures have surpassed expectations, after what the organisation said were "exceptional" audiences in Europe and large increases in "non-traditional" markets such as the United States and Asia.
The match between England and Italy is set to become the most-watched quarter-final in the tournament's 52-year history and had a record 20.3 million viewers in Britain and 21.8 million in Italy.
The British figures were more than for Prince William's wedding to Kate Middleton last year or Queen Elizabeth II's jubilee concert earlier this month.
More than 18 million people in Spain watched the semi-final against Portugal, giving broadcaster Telecinco an 83.3 percent market share and making it one of the most viewed programmes in Spanish history.
With the media market increasingly fragmented, UEFA's director of communications, Alexandre Fourtoy, said the figures were something to be pleased about.
"The market share is huge. There's not much else that can get 70 percent market share. Football remains something that brings people together," he told AFP.
The quadrennial European Championships are football's second-biggest tournament after the World Cup.
At this edition in Poland and Ukraine, only two of the 30 matches played so far -- England versus Italy quarter-final and the Spain-Portugal semi-final -- finished goalless.
And with teams like Poland, Russia, England, France, the Netherlands and Germany, a heady mix of history, politics and traditional rivalry has added to the spectacle.
"The Euros have now become a global event. I think the quality of football and the drama has made a product that's really appreciated overseas," said Fourtoy.
"The Euros always have something between the teams. You don't get that between say Mexico and Ivory Coast. The history between these countries goes back centuries and I think that's why it's so strong. All the matches have a derby feel to them."
This time round, website hits and downloads are just as important as viewing figures, with the explosion in social media over the last four years a boon for statistics-hungry -- and opinionated -- football fans.
Social media blog digital-football.com described Euro 2012 as "another major milestone for football social media", with attractively packaged statistics and interactivity -- or "data-tainment" -- well-received and an example to follow.
"Clubs need to learn from Euro 2012 and look at ways of using what may traditionally be 'boring data' and turning it into engaging content," the website said.
UEFA's official Euro 2012 Facebook page has more than 830,000 members while more than 145,000 people were following @uefa.com in English on Twitter. The smartphone application has meanwhile been downloaded five million times.
"The last time (at Euro 2008) (applications) weren't on the market. Today you're seeing a certain kind of digital fragmentation. You've got Facebook, Twitter, YouTube the application...," said Fourtoy.
"We've got a 360-degree presence because that's how people are watching things."
Television, though, remains the bedrock of UEFA's work at the tournament and is reflected in the vast broadcasting operation in place in both co-host nations.
Sixteen television crews have been filming the teams non-stop, with 1,500 production staff working to make the content available to all 206 broadcasting rights holders.
On match days, broadcasters can choose from nine different feeds from 32 cameras, including images above, inside and outside the stadium to ones solely on fans and the substitutes' bench or the moving "spidercam" over the pitch itself.
Fourtoy said that innovation, including a proposed 3D feed for Sunday's final, is a key part of hosting the event -- and keeping it fresh.
"It (the tournament) is a laboratory on several levels," he added.