But beyond the well-known names and faces, a host of young players from a range of nations caught the eye and reminded the watching world what they’re capable of.
Here we take a look at ten such stars in the making, who will be looking to grab the attention of Europe’s biggest clubs and become household names themselves over the coming seasons.
Leroy Fer (left)
His form over recent campaigns as well as this summer has seen his stock rise, and a proposed move to the Premier League with Everton was only thwarted by a knee injury back in January.
However, with the Merseysiders looking to revive the deal according to Charles Perrin in the Daily Express, it may not be long before Fer is plying his trade on one of the biggest stages of all.
Another star of the tournament, and another youngster on the brink of the big time, is Spanish starlet Isco, who netted three times as his country cruised to victory.
The forward-thinking midfielder netted 12 times for Malaga last term, with nine of them coming in La Liga; his composed eye for goal has not gone unnoticed elsewhere.
And with a move looking increasingly likely, it may not be long before the former Valencia man adds to his solitary cap for Spain’s senior side having made his debut in February.
Havard Nielsen (left)
Oslo-born Havard Nielsen was part of the Norway side that brushed past England in the group stages.
And with two assists during the tournament, he more than proved his worth to coach Tor Ole Sculled
Comfortable out wide as well as in a central attacking role, the 19-year-old has represented Norway at every level from the Under-15s upwards, and netted in his senior debut against Hungary last year.
Largely considered to be one of his country’s most exciting prospects, Nielsen is currently on the books of Red Bull Salzburg in the Austrian Bundesliga, having signed from Valerenga last year.
Ciro Immobile (left)
Having helped his side reach the final of the European Under-21 Championships, Ciro Immobile looked to have made a game of it when he expertly cancelled out Thiago Alcantara’s early strike.
His superb touch and lobbed finish stunned the Spanish, and though Italy would go on to lose the game, the goal served as a reminder of the striker’s undoubted talent.
But if he continues to score goals like the one against Spain this week, it won’t be long before he’s back at the top end of the Serie A table.
Since the age of 15, Patrick Herrmann has been representing Germany in one form or another; and given his displays for the Under-21s this summer, few would bet against a senior debut in the near future.
His ability from wide areas had attracted the attention of Andre Villas-Boas at Tottenham Hotspur, but according to the Jack Wilson in the Daily Express, the trail went cold when Herrmann signed a new deal with his current club last month.
If his form continues, however, it won’t be long before some of Europe’s top clubs come calling for the 22-year-old once more.
The 22-year-old goalkeeper was largely unknown heading into this summer’s Under-21 tournament, but the name of Orjan Nyland was soon on everyone’s lips following Norway’s semi-final against Spain.
Despite conceding three goals to the eventual champions, Nyland kept Tello, Moreno and Co. at bay until stoppage time in the first half with a string of outstanding saves.
His acrobatics frustrated the Spanish and drew warm praise for the tall 22-year-old, who currently plays his club football for Molde in his home country.
The stopper won the Man of the Match award in the 2012 Norwegian Cup Final as his former side Hødd lifted the trophy, and is tipped by many to become Norway’s number one.
Adam Maher (left)
Already capped at international level by the Netherlands, it’s safe to say Moroccan born playmaker Adam Maher is on his way to the very top.
Negotiations for the 19-year-old midfielder were reported to have opened earlier this year between Manchester City and his current club AZ, but more recent interest from PSV and Ajax has thrown his move to England into doubt.
But what is not in doubt is Maher’s reputation, which has soared since his goalscoring exploits in the Dutch Eredivisie and the KNVB Cup as well as the Europa League.
Since scoring on his debut for AZ back in December 2010, the youngster has been a model of consistency, and he made his mark for the Under-21s this summer by netting in the 3-2 group win over Germany.
Matteo Bianchetti (right)
In the grand tradition of composed Italian centre-backs, Matteo Bianchetti certainly looked the part at the European Under-21 Championships, with a string of assured performances for the Azzurri.
Having joined Inter as a 14-year-old, the Como-born defender is yet to make a senior appearance for the Milan giants, but has tasted first-team action whilst on loan at Verona.
Now age 20, many in football would label next season a ‘make or break’ campaign for the defender.
But his performances in Israel, which included an eye-catching assist in the final against Spain, suggest he’s ready to step up to the mark at the top level.
Having made 34 appearances in all competitions in the Netherlands last season following his arrival from Rosenborg in 2012, big things are expected from Henriksen next term.
And having already been capped at a senior level by Norway, it’s surely a matter of time before one of Europe’s big guns makes a move.
At Real Sociedad since his youth career began, Asier Illarramendi is now catching the eye of some of Europe’s top clubs after an impressive Under-21 tournament that had the purists purring.
The 23-year-old played in every game in Israel, and has represented his country at every level up to the Under-23s.