ULTIMATE EURO 2020 GUIDE: England face a clash with bitter rivals Scotland after play-off drama completed the 24-country line-up for next summer’s showpiece… But who is facing who? Which teams are in the group of death? And who are the favourites?
- Scotland, Hungary, Slovakia and North Macedonia completed Euro 2020 line-up
- England will host Scotland at Wembley in Group D on June 18 in standout clash
- Sportsmail takes a look at the six groups and the 24 teams as countdown begins
At last, the Euro 2020 line-up is complete. Scotland did it. They’ve ended 23 years of hurt. Steve Clarke’s side have joined England in Group D at the European Championships in the summer.
Three other countries – Hungary, Slovakia and North Macedonia – finally booked their places in the rescheduled tournament on an dramatic night of international football.
The Euro 2020 play-offs were supposed to be held in March, just months before the competition commenced but they finally took place eight months later.
Here, Sportsmail takes a look at the six groups (which were drawn almost a year ago!) as the countdown to the first clash on June 11 begins.
Scotland ended 23 years of hurt on Thursday night as they booked their place in Euro 2020
Portugal are the reigning European champions and will start title defence against Hungary
Portugal are in same group as world champions France and they meet in final Group F game
Friday, June 11: Turkey vs Italy (9pm, Rome)
Saturday, June 12: Wales vs Switzerland (3pm, Baku)
Wednesday, June 16: Turkey vs Wales (6pm, Baku)
Italy vs Switzerland (9pm, Rome)
Sunday, June 20: Italy vs Wales (6pm, Rome)
Switzerland vs Turkey (6pm, Baku)
Last won the Euros in 1968 and have been going through the rebuilding process after failing to qualify for the 2018 World Cup. Roberto Mancini has got them heading in the right direction and are 12/1 to lift the trophy next year.
They qualified for the tournament with a 100 per cent record and have been things have been ticking away nicely in the last year. With the likes of Gianluigi Donnarumma, Ciro Immobile, Federico Chiesa and Lorenzo Pellegrini experience is complementing youth.
Vladimir Petkovic’s side are ranked four places lower than Italy in 16th but they too qualified for the Euros as group winners. They got knocked out at the last-16 stage of Euro 2016 – their previous best at the tournament – after losing on penalties to Poland.
In Arsenal’s Granit Xhaka and Liverpool’s Xherdan Shaqiri they have two stars who can bring the quality needed at this level.
Turkey reached the semi-finals of the competition back in 2008 and qualified for next year’s event as runners-up in their group. They ended up two points behind winners France but took four points off the world champions.
Senol Gunes guided Turkey to a third-placed finish at the 2002 World Cup and returned for a second spell with the national side in February 2019. Everton’s forgotten man Cenk Tosun was their top scorer in qualifying but may struggle for game time under Carlo Ancelotti this season.
No one can forget Wales’ sensational run to the Euro 2016 semi-finals and that Hal Robson-Kanu turn against Belgium. The striker has since retired but they’ve still got Gareth Bale.
Manager Ryan Giggs is making progress as a manager and got them over the finish line to reach the tournament as group runners up. Wales have some promising young talents in their ranks but it will be some task to emulate the fairytale of four years ago. Wales’ biggest clash of the group against Italy takes place on June 20 in Rome.
Wales have some promising young talents in their ranks and face the likes of Italy in Group A
GROUP B FIXTURES AND ODDS TO WIN EURO 2020
Saturday, June 12: Denmark vs Finland (6pm, Copenhagen)
Belgium vs Russia (9pm, St Petersburg)
Wednesday, June 16: Finland vs Russia, 3pm, St Petersburg)
Thursday, June 17: Denmark vs Belgium (6pm Copenhagen)
Monday, June 21: Russia vs Denmark (9pm, Copenhagen)
Finland vs Belgium (9pm, St Petersburg)
Ranked the best international side in the world. Roberto Martinez’s side are joint-favourites to be European champions in July and with good reason. Their side is blessed with quality with the likes of Manchester City maestro Kevin De Bruyne and Real Madrid winger Eden Hazard.
As already mentioned they crashed out to Wales in 2016 but Belgium’s ‘Golden Generation’ have what it takes to go further than the last eight this time. They sealed their spot in the tournament by topping their group.
Won the Euros as USSR in 1960 and finished as semi-finalists as Russia back in 2008, but they got knocked out of at the group stage in France four years go. They certainly gave the host nation something to cheer about by reaching the quarter-finals of the World Cup two years ago.
Manager Stanislav Cherchesov exceeded expectations by achieving that feat, which included a memorable penalty shoot-out win over Spain. He has continued that momentum by getting them to another finals as group runners up.
Denmark are ranked 13th in the world after failing to qualify for Euro 2016 but booked their spot in next year’s tournament as runners up and are 50/1 to go all the way.
Boss Age Hareide guided the Danes to the last 16 of the World Cup in 2018 before their elimination on penalties by eventual finalists Croatia and in Christian Eriksen, their top scorer in Euro 2020 qualifying, they have someone they can call upon to produce a moment of magic.
They are big outsiders at 200/1 but just joining the elite nations at the top table is an achievement in itself. Former defender Markku Kanerva was capped by Finland 59 times as a player before serving first as the country’s Under 21 coach.
He made the transition into the main hotseat in 2016 and has taken Finland to their first-ever major tournament.
Star-studded Belgium are joint-favourites to go all the way at Euro 2020 in the summer
GROUP C FIXTURES AND ODDS TO WIN EURO 2020
Sunday, June 13: Austria vs North Macedonia (6pm, Bucharest)
Holland vs Ukraine (9pm, Amsterdam)
Thursday, June 17: Ukraine vs North Macedonia (3pm, Bucharest)
Holland vs Austria (9pm, Amsterdam)
Monday, June 21: North Macedonia vs Holland (6pm, Amsterdam)
Ukraine vs Austria (6pm, Bucharest)
North Macedonia 200/1
Have never got past the group stages at a European Championships but they have every chance next year. Former AC Milan and Chelsea striker Andriy Shevchenko is making his mark on the side as they pipped reigning European champions Portugal in qualifying.
He took the route into management and has been deeply involved with the Ukrainian national side. He was first assistant before becoming manager in 2016, leading them to a comfortable qualification that was sealed with a win over Portugal last year.
Ronald Koeman steadied the ship after Holland failed to reach the Euros in France and the World Cup in Russia but has moved onto pastures new at Barcelona since qualifying for the Euros as group runners up.
Holland reached the final of the Nations League in 2019, signalling the progress made under Koeman. Frank de Boer has take over the reins but has not won a game since his appointment. Plenty of time to get back on track and Holland have high-quality options.
Ranked 25th in the world, Franco Foda’s side qualified for the Euros after finishing runners-up in their group with former West Ham forward Marko Arnautovic their go-to guy.
They have failed to ever progress from the group stages in the tournament and they have not secured a victory at a major finals since 1990. The German manager brought the curtain down on his playing career in Austria with Sturm Graz before taking charge of the side. After three years at the helm he was appointed the national team manager in January 2018.
Like Finland, North Macedonia are outsiders at 200/1 after qualifying courtesy of 1-0 win over Georgia in the play-off clash on Thursday night.
Former Lazio, Inter Milan and Napoli forward Goran Pandev, 37, was the hero of the night, netting the goal to seal the country’s first place in a major tournament. A momentous occasion for the minnows.
Holland have made their return to major competition after missing the last two tournaments
GROUP D FIXTURES AND ODDS TO WIN EURO 2020
Sunday, June 13: England vs Croatia (3pm, London)
Monday, June 14: Scotland vs Czech Republic (3pm, Glasgow)
Friday, June 18: Croatia vs Czech Republic (6pm, Glasgow)
England vs Scotland (9pm, London)
Tuesday, June 22: Czech Republic vs England (9pm, London)
Croatia vs Scotland (9pm, Glasgow)
Czech Republic 80/1
Gareth Southgate’s side are joint-favourites alongside Belgium to win Euro 2020 in July. The Three Lions best finish at the tournament was achieving third place back in 1968.
Since hitting the desperate low of four years ago when they crashed out at the last-16 stage to Iceland, England have been transformed by Southgate in recent years. He guided them to the semi-finals of 2018 World Cup and into the Nations League finals. However this group is tricky with the Three Lions looking to get revenge over Croatia.
Croatia are ranked three places lower than England in seventh but they broke English fans hearts when they sealed a 2-1 victory in the World Cup semi-finals in Russia.
Their previous best at a Euros was reaching the quarter-finals in 1996 and 2008 but they qualified as group winners and have been on an upward trajectory under Zlatko Dalic. The World Cup runners-up face England in the first match of Group D on June 13.
A side that England know well from qualifying after beating Southgate’s outfit in England’s only defeat of the campaign. Progressed to Euro 2020 as group runners up behind the Three Lions.
Failed to get out of the group four years ago but can cause problems. English fans will also be familiar with one of their star men – Tomas Soucek – who has become a key player for West Ham in the Premier League.
The wait is over. Scotland will finally be playing at a major tournament after a very long time away. And how they will want to make their mark. The standout tie between England and Scotland takes place at Wembley on Friday, June 18 and it’s not one to miss.
They qualified after winning a tense penalty shootout over Serbia in Belgrade on Thursday night with Derby goalkeeper David Marshall saving Aleksandar Mitrovic’s spot-kick. Clarke is building momentum and their place in the competition was deserved.
Gareth Southgate’s England are joint-favourites alongside Belgium to go all the way in summer
GROUP E FIXTURES AND ODDS TO WIN EURO 2020
Monday, June 14: Poland vs Slovakia (6pm, Dublin)
Spain vs Sweden (9pm, Bilbao)
Friday, June 18: Sweden vs Slovakia (3pm, Dublin)
Saturday, June 19: Spain vs Poland (9pm, Bilbao)
Wednesday, June 23: Slovakia vs Spain (6pm, Bilbao)
Sweden vs Poland (6pm, Dublin)
The three-time European champions are 8/1 to make it four in 2021 and after exiting at the last-16 stage four years ago will want to return to where they belong.
Luis Enrique’s former assistant Robert Moreno wrapped up Spain’s qualification as group winners before the former returned to the hotseat. Spain have some exciting prospects coming through such as Barcelona starlet Ansu Fati but still can rely on the experience and knowledge of skipper Sergio Ramos.
Another team in Group E to have qualified as group winners, Poland achieved their best Euro finish in France when they lost on penalties to Portugal in the last 16. Poland have lethal Bayern Munich forward Robert Lewandowski in their arsenal – he is the country’s all-time leading scorer.
There were calls for manager Jerzy Brzeczek to quit after a loss to Slovenia in qualifying but they have dissipated. A Poland international midfielder during the 1990s, Brzeczek took over as manager in 2018.
Ranked 19th in the world, Sweden have progressed since their group-stage departure at Euro 2016. Manager Janne Andersson has rejuvenated the side in recent years and guided them to the quarter-finals of the World Cup.
Since then they have gained promotion from League B to League A in the Nations League and reached the Euros after finishing as runners-up. They are 66/1 to win the tournament in the summer.
Slovakia needed extra-time to overcome Northern Ireland in the play-offs on Thursday as forward Michal Duris scored the winner in the 110th minute. After their late victory they are 100/1 to win the Euros next year.
It is their second successive European Championships and they were knocked out at the last-16 stage in 2016. They have Inter Milan centre back Milan Skriniar and veteran midfielder Marek Hamsik in their ranks.
Three-time European champions Spain still can rely on the experience of Sergio Ramos (left)
GROUP F FIXTURES AND ODDS TO WIN EURO 2020
Tuesday, June 15: Hungary vs Portugal (6pm, Budapest)
France vs Germany (9pm, Munich)
Saturday, June 19: Hungary vs France (3pm, Budapest)
Portugal vs Germany (6pm, Munich)
Wednesday, June 23: Germany vs Hungary (9pm, Munich)
Portugal vs France (9pm, Budapest)
Germany are fourth favourites at 7/1 to win the Euros for a fourth time in their history and they will desperate to make amends for their humiliation at the 2018 World Cup when they crashed out at the group stage.
Manager Joachim Low preparing for his seventh major tournament after leading them to the top of their qualifying group and he has shaken things up in the past two years. As ever, the Germans have a huge pool of talent.
Didier Deschamps’ side are third favourites to add the European championships to their world title at 11/2 and with their ridiculously talented side look well placed to go one better than four years ago.
In their home tournament they were beaten in the final by Portugal and so will be eager to atone for that when they face them in the final group game on June 23. France have won the Euros twice already and qualified for next year’s edition as group winners.
The reigning champions are 12/1 to retain their title in July and face a tough task after being pitted in the Group of Death with Germany and France. Of course, having superstar Cristiano Ronaldo as their captain will help. He took his international goal tally to 102 and will want to make his mark on the big stage once again.
But Fernando Santos’ side only qualified for Euro 2020 as runners up despite their 2016 success and winning the Nations League last year.
More late drama in a Euro 2020 play-off on Thursday saw Hungary join the 24-strong line up. It looked as though Iceland were going to make it through until the dying embers of the match.
With just two minutes remaining Hungary found the all-important two goals to send them to the rearranged tournament on an emphatic night. Their best ever finish was third place back in 1964 but their chances of progressing from the group stage look slim.
Germany make up a mouth-watering group alongside Portugal and France
EURO 2020 KNOCKOUT SCHEDULE
Saturday, June 26
2A vs 2B (6pm, Amsterdam)
1A vs 2C (9pm, London)
Sunday, June 27
1C vs 3D/E/F (16pm, Budapest)
1B vs 3A/D/E/F (9pm, Bilbao)
Monday, June 28
2D vs 2E (6pm, Copenhagen)
1F vs 3A/B/C (9pm, Bucharest)
Tuesday, June 29
1D vs 2F (6pm, Dublin)
1E vs 3A/B/C/D (9pm, Glasgow)
Friday, July 2
Winner 6 vs Winner 5 (6pm, St Petersburg)
Winner 4 vs Winner 2 (9pm, Munich)
Saturday, July 3
Winner 3 vs Winner 1 (6pm, Baku)
Winner 8 vs Winner 7 (9pm, Rome)
Tuesday, July 6
Winner QF2 vs Winner QF1 (9pm, London)
Wednesday, July 7
Winner QF4 vs Winner QF3 (9pm, London)
Sunday, July 11
Winner SF1 vs Winner SF2 (9pm, London)
Share this article
Source: Read Full Article