Who Will Win Euro 2020? Top Five Contenders

After winning the competition in 2016, Portugal appears frail as the 2020 Euros near. 2018 World Cup champions, France, look too strong to defeat. Yet, Belgium, Germany and England all have squads capable of competing for the trophy. But who will ultimately lift the trophy next July?

France

Similar to 2000, France will be entering Euro 2020 looking much stronger than they did at the world cup. Their relatively young squad consists of multiple players at their peak. But with a series of injuries haunting star goalkeeper Hugo Lloris, defender Aymeric Laporte and playmaker Paul Pogba, France are not the outright favourites. 

Of course, France is in no shortage of squad depth. Clement Lenglet, Ferland Mendy, Tanguy Ndombele have stepped in to perform incredibly well in the absence of Samuel Umtiti and company. So, even if a few first-team players miss with absent, you can expect France to reach the last four of the tournament.

Belgium

After an effortlessly easy qualification round in which they accrued 30 out of 30 points, Belgium is the favourite team to win Euro 2020 for many people. The team has been exemplary for the past two years, and most of their squad members are in their prime.

Led by world-class playmakers Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne, a prime Romelo Lukaku and a top-notch defensive unit, it will be a shame if Belgium walks out of Euro 2020 with nothing. The team’s defensive players: Jan Vertonghen, Thomas Vermaelen and Toby Alderwereld don’t have much time at their prime.

So, if Belgium wants to impress its football fans, clinching the Euro 2020 trophy will be the best way to do it. Can they do it? Bookies are doubtful, with Paddy power giving the team odds 11/2. But if you believe in the squad, capitalize on the quality odds. 

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England

England’s frontline of Raheem Sterling, Harry Kane and Jadon Sancho is one of the best in Europe. Their midfield is decent, but it’s in the defence where all their troubles lie. Despite having a defensive unit consisting of star premier league players Harry Maguire, John Stones, Alexander Arnold and Fikayo Tomori, they still ship too many goals to make them a serious contender.

You can’t count England out, though. With a squad full of young, rising stars, England has a realistic chance of making it to the last four of Euro 2020. They did it in Russia in 2018, and they can do it in the summer.

If you bet on sports regularly, England promises incredible odds on most bookie sites. Paddy Power tips the three lions to win the competition at odds 4/1. They have France as the second favourites and Netherlands as the third favourites.

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Spain

Spain will participate in the Euros as one of the more underrated teams in the competition. But anyone thinking they have no chance at the tournament would better check out their recent performance. After cruising into the euros with an excellent record, Luis Enrique is back as the head coach, and he’s confident they can win the Euros.

But can they? Spain has a roster full of A-star players. From Isco to Rodrigo, Marco Asensio to Alvaro Morata, Spain’s players are all key players of their clubs. If they can forge the chemistry required to create an excellent team, they will be serious contenders at the Euros next year. 

Germany

Similar to France, Germany will rely on its experienced players to lead them to another of many European championships, at least according to head coach Joachim Low. Despite having a bulk of brilliant youngsters like Serge Gnabry, Leroy Sane and Julian Draxler, Low thinks his players are too young to pose any serious threat at the Euros.

Surprisingly, the head coach has previously overlooked experienced squad members, terming them as surplus. Mats Hummels, Jerome Boateng, Tomas Muller and Mesut Ozil are some of the experienced Germans who no longer represent their country despite playing at club level.  

All in all, Germany could be the surprise wild card in the summer. Their youngsters are as impressive as the English squad. They are fast, well-coordinated and talented enough to take just about any other team in Europe.

Portugal

Bookies don’t believe Portugal will pose a significant threat in the summer. But isn’t that what they said ahead of Euro 2016 and the Nation’s League? You could argue Portugal’s best players are at the sunset stage of their careers.

And sure enough, Cristiano Ronaldo has been shockingly inconsistent in the last one year. Pepe, one of Portugal’s defender is in his mid-30s while Bernando Silva has a few months before his retirement. But on the other end, Portugal’s breed of youngsters could do some damage if unchecked.

Led by Joao Felix, Andrew Silva, Eder, Renato Sanches and Bruno Fernandes, Portugal’s team of young players could confidently upset some big names and reach the last eight. If Ronaldo and Silva also happen to be in quality form, don’t be surprised if Portugal goes all the way to the semis or the finals.

Croatia

Having reached the World Cup finals in 2018, nothing can stop Croatia from dreaming big in the Euros. Team captain Luka Modric has always shown class at the national competitions, and he will hope to do the same in the summer. 

Although some star players like Mario Mandzukic are near retirement, Croatia has already identified its next crop of team members. CSKA Moscow midfielder Nikola Vlasic, for example, performed exemplary at the qualifiers.  Dinamo Zagreb’s Bruno Petkovic has also been phenomenal for Croatia. 

The team has a reasonably shaky defence line. But should they work on it before the summer, Croatia will be one of the team sternly fighting for the trophy.

By Rob 30th December 2019

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