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Posted By Topic: SBOBET: Euro 2020 (Previews & Reviews)       - Views: 485 Change Timezone:
SBOBET 03-Dec 2019 Tuesday 5:33 PM (248 days ago)               #1
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Euro 2020 Finals Draw: France, Portugal and Germany in Group of Death!

Another one million tickets for next summer’s Euro 2020 are about to go on sale and after the draw was made in Bucharest today they’ll go in a flash.

The big news is that France, the World Champions have been drawn with Portugal, the European Champions and Germany, the 2014 World Champions. Whoever lands with them in Group F from the play-offs will need a miracle!

England, Italy, Spain, Netherlands and Belgium will all be reasonably happy with their groups and, as one of the hosts, the Euro 2020 betting odds are backing England to go deep into the competition. The Three Lions have a big advantage as they’ll play their three group games at Wembley, and if they then navigate the Round of 16 and quarter-finals then the semi-final and final will be at the home of English football as well.

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. England is one of a group of nations who can win this, alongside the Group F threesome, there’s Spain, who had an impressive qualifying campaign, rounding it off with a 5-0 win over Romania, and the best team in the world according to FIFA Rankings, Belgium.



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Group A

And let’s not forget Italy.

The Azzurri have had a kind draw. Roberto Mancini’s team has picked up Switzerland, Wales and Turkey, though none of these are easy games. The Swiss are always a tough side to beat and won their qualifying group. Wales are less predictable. With his mercurial talent and passion for his country Gareth Bale can produce magic. Juventus midfielder Aaron Ramsay too is a class act.

Group B

Roberto Martinez’ Belgium have 2018 World Cup hosts Russia to face as well as Denmark and Finland. None of those will hold too much fear for the Red Devils and they will be playing for second place. If Christian Eriksen plays to his full potential then I think he could inspire the Danes to a spot in the Round of 16.

Group C

The Netherlands have improved dramatically over the past four years and boast some of the best players in Europe, with Virgil Van Dijk and Matthijs de Light an imperious centre back pairing. Austria and Ukraine and the play-off winner from path A or D will have the task of trying to get some change out of that pair.

Group D

Euro 2020 title contenders England hope to advance into the next round
The Three Lions renew their rivalries with Croatia and Czech Republic in Group D

There’s a meeting of World Cup semi-finalists England and Croatia  to look forward to in Group D and that will be the Three Lions’ opener at Wembley. Gareth Southgate’s team will be after revenge and I would back them to navigate the group safely. Czech Republic recently beat England in Prague but they’ll struggle to make the top two, with the winner of play-off path C to make up the four. That could open up the possibility of an England versus Scotland clash, but Norway or Serbia are more likely qualifiers.

But do you want to finish top of this group?

The winners will face the runner up in Group F, and if they win that game against France, Germany or Portugal, they are likely to face Spain in the quarter finals.

Group E

Spain won their qualifying group in fine style and they are joined in Group E by Sweden and Poland and the winners of play-off path B, which will be one of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Slovakia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Luis Enrique’s team will be highly fancied to carry on where they left off and win this group too.

Group F

So here we go! Group F will have more than its fair share of Euro 2020 highlights.

Three of Europe’s heavyweights meet in Group F as Germany were drawn out of the hat to join the World Champions, France.  And before the buzz in anticipation of that particular meeting died down, Portugal joined them. France is the team everyone wanted to avoid and, if they play to their full potential they have every chance of adding the Euro 2020 crown to their Russia 2018 title.

I’d say Portugal might be the most worried of the three. Germany stormed into the finals with a 6-1 destruction of Northern Ireland last week. Serge Gnabry was simply brilliant as Joachim Low’s seemed to have rediscovered some of their steel and attacking ruthlessness.

The play-off winner from Path A or D will join these giants of world football. Good luck to them!

There are some mouth-watering ties to look forward to in what is sure to be another fabulous showcase. And of course, you can be there, every step of the way with all the very latest news, highlights and updates right here at SBOBET.

 

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This message was edited by SBOBET on 03-Dec-2019 at 5:33 PM


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SBOBET 15-Jan 2020 Wednesday 12:55 PM (205 days ago)            #2
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The Top 5 Best Contenders to Win Euro 2020

The upcoming Euro 2020 tournament will not be short of contenders capable of winning it all. At least eight teams have a very realistic shot at lifting the Henri Delaunay Cup at Wembley.

However, five sides stand apart as the most likely European Championship winners. They possess some of the best players and managers in the entire tournament, which should help them reach the latter stages.

Let's break down these five teams' championship credentials and find out exactly why they are the very top contenders to win Euro 2020.

 

England

The SBOBET odds have England priced as favourites at 5.00 and with good reason. The Three Lions possess some of the most promising young attacking talents in all of Europe in their squad.

Manager Gareth Southgate has a host of attacking options to choose from, with Jadon Sancho, Raheem Sterling, and Marcus Rashford, as well as right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold, who has emerged as the main creative force for Liverpool this season.

Captain and top scorer Harry Kane might not be 100 per cent for the tournament after undergoing hamstring surgery, but the emergence of Chelsea's Tammy Abraham will provide a much-needed alternative for that lead striker role.

Admittedly, there are some rather significant question marks. There's a particularly big one at starting centre-back now that John Stones has fallen out of favour at Manchester City. It also remains to be seen how Southgate will deploy his midfield, especially against top opposition.

But still, the tools are there for Southgate to bring the Euros home for the very first time. And if they can make it to the semi-finals and final, they will possess home advantage, which could prove crucial.

 

Belgium

Belgium may have beaten England in the third-place game in the 2018 World Cup, but they are only second-favourites to them in the Euros at 6.00.

Roberto Martinez remains at the helm, and he led the Red Devils to one of the most dominant qualification campaigns in recent memory. They won all 10 matches, scoring a whopping 40 goals with just three conceded.

Romelu Lukaku & Kevin De Bruyne eyes to show super forms as they lead Belgium in the Euro 2020
Romelu Lukaku & Kevin De Bruyne celebrate after the latter scored a goal during Belgium's Euro 2020 qualifying game against Scotland

Belgium's squad remains as good as ever, with most of its golden generation in the prime of their careers. Kevin De Bruyne remains one of the best midfielders in the world. Romelu Lukaku keeps banging in the goals in Inter. And Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen form arguably the best centre-back partnership in all of Europe.

Captain Eden Hazard hasn't had the best season for Real Madrid, but with brother Thorgan and Dries Mertens in reserve, the Belgians are clearly not short of attacking weapons.

The Belgians have fallen short in each of the last three major tournaments, but they have as good a chance as any to make it all the way this year.

 

France

But not if France have anything to say about it. The reigning world champions knocked Belgium out in the semi-finals of the 2018 World Cup and have made the final in each of the last two major tournaments.

Their squad also remains as talented as ever, with world-class quality at just about every position. That's why it's curious to see them priced as only third-favourites at a mere 7.00.

Of course, the fact that they were drawn in the Group of Death along with Portugal and Germany played a significant part. Qualification to the knockout round is far from automatic.

Paul Pogba has also missed most of the season with Manchester United, while Antoine Griezmann has not been at his best with Barcelona.

But there are also a number of positives. Kylian Mbappe remains among the best players in all of Europe, and Didier Deschamps is a proven top-quality manager. And their squad is as deep as any in the tournament.

Deschamps' cautious playing style during the World Cup was annoying to some, especially given all of France's remarkable attacking talents, but it got the job done.

With a defence that is as good as any in Europe -- Raphael Varane and N'Golo Kante are absolute rocks up the middle -- and Mbappe always a threat to spring a lightning-quick counterattack, France have the perfect formula for winning tournament football.

 

Germany

Germany were finally knocked off their perch as one of the top sides in the world after their disastrous group-stage exit in the 2018 World Cup. And after a fine Euro 2020 qualification campaign where they edged out a resurgent Netherlands side to finish top of their group, they still haven't looked like true world-beaters.



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Manager Jogi Low has brought in a new generation to replace the heroes of their 2014 World Cup triumph. The likes of Timo Werner, Serge Gnabry and Joshua Kimmich are now the side's stalwarts, with Manuel Neuer, Marco Reus and Toni Kroos offering veteran support.

Their current odds of 9.50 to win the Euros are telling of the fact that the Germans aren't quite as great as they once were. But it's never a good idea to underestimate the Germans, and they could yet prove everyone wrong and perform well as they often do in tournaments.

 

Spain

This final spot in the top five was down to Spain and the Netherlands. But despite the Dutch having better Euro 2020 odds than Spain's 9.00, the major Euro 2020 news that top striker Memphis Depay will miss the tournament due to a knee injury knocks them out as truly top contenders.

Granted, Spain have a major question mark up front as well. The likes of Rodrigo, Alvaro Morata, and Iago Aspas will be tasked to the line, and none of them has proven to be particularly reliable at the top level.

But still, there's a great deal of quality within the squad, especially in midfield. And with the return of Luis Enrique to manage the side, there's a decent chance he can maximise all that talent at his disposal.

The days of Spain dominating international football appear to be long gone. But they are more than capable of making some noise in Euro 2020 and with a few breaks, they might end up lifting the cup once again.

Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.

 

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This message was edited by SBOBET on 15-Jan-2020 at 12:56 PM


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SBOBET 22-Jan 2020 Wednesday 5:25 PM (198 days ago)            #3
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Euro 2020: Top 10 Young Prospects To Watch Out For

Football fans have every reason to be excited for the upcoming Euro 2020, as some of the world’s best will duke it out for the much-coveted Henri Delauney trophy in England.

England, Belgium, France, Germany and Spain look to be the top contenders given their strong performance in the group stage while defending champs Portugal will be keen on bringing home the bacon once more.

Today, allow SBOBET to examine at some promising young prospects that can leave a lasting impression in the tournament.

 

Jadon Sancho – England

Perhaps the youngest in this list, Jadon Sancho continues to show as to why he’s one of the world’s best players today. At 19 years old, the Dortmund striker is already a polished playmaker that can wreak havoc on the attack.

In the Bundesliga, Sancho has already amassed 10 goals and 10 assists. Expect him to bring his A-game as the Three Lions continue their quest for their first UEFA Euro title.

 

Krzysztof Piatek - Poland

Poland continue its rise at the European ranks and you can thank Krzysztof Piatek for that.

The AC Milan forward has formed a fiery attacking partnership with Robert Lewandowski as he kicked off his burgeoning international career by scoring a goal every two games. He will have to keep it up if they would want to go far in the competition.

 

Breel Embolo - Switzerland

Breel Embolo has bounced back well after suffering a spate of injuries, and the powerful forward is one prospect to look out for in the Euro 2020.

The Swiss player has been an instrumental cog for Gladbach’s resurgence in the Bundesliga and he is expected to bring his high-flying ways here in the tournament.

 

Donny Van de Beek - Netherlands

Donny Van de Beek is one of the hottest commodities in European football and it isn’t hard to see why.

The Netherlands midfielder possesses excellent ball control and instincts for a 22-year-old and he is expected to carry the load for Netherlands as they try to go on a deep run. He and Virgil Van Dijk will form a viable one-two punch that will spell doom for their opponents.

 

Joao Felix - Portugal

Joao Felix is the latest star to join in a roster oozing with talent of Portugal squad in the upcoming Euro 2020
Portugal's Joao Felix during training with Atletico Madrid

Portugal’s Euro 2020 odds of repeating look to be slim, but they are still expected to contend with the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Joao Felix leading the way.

Joao Felix is the latest star to join in a roster oozing with talent and his aggressive approach plus undeniable talent should help Portugal immensely in their campaign.

 

Serge Gnabry - Germany

Serge Gnabry will also be a player to look out for as he has been an exceptional midfielder both for Bayern Munich and for Germany.

The young German had his breakout party in their previous game against Northern Ireland to where he scored a hat-trick. Gnabry has shown great maturity and poise and he is expected to continue that trend playing alongside the likes of Julian Brandt and Leon Goretzka.

 

Jacob Bruun Larsen – Denmark

The Danes may be one of the underdogs in the Final 16 of Euro 2020. But with the likes of Christian Eriksen and Jacob Bruun Larsen leading the attack, they might pull off some big surprises.

Jacob Bruun Larsen is a player to watch for Denmark as he is a quick forward who plays like Marco Reus in his peak. The 21-year-old possesses a great first touch and has shown the capability to play well within Age Hareide’s system.

Konrad Laimer - Austria

Konrad Laimer is expected to perform well in the Euro 2020 under head coach Franco Foda. With his versatility and physical attributes, Laimer will be their main engine at the central midfield and can also act as a dangerous wing option.

The RB Leipzig stalwart will be tasked to do almost everything for Austria, and much of their team’s success will be placed on the 22-year-old’s broad shoulders.



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Kai Havertz – Germany

Bundesliga wunderkind Kai Havertz is one of the most prodigious talents in European football, given he’s garnered interest from the likes of Bayern Munich, Manchester United, Liverpool, and Barcelona in the transfer market.

Havertz often acts as the national club’s source of creativity in the central midfield as his passing and speed opens up chances for his teammates to score. With such a well-developed repertoire at a young age, Havertz is expected to produce goals and some Euro 2020 highlights for Germany.

 

Raheem Sterling - England

One of the most prolific scorers in European football is set to lead the Three Lions’ attack in the Euro 2020. Raheem Sterling is a predatory forward who isn’t gun-shy in Gareth Southgate’s system and he has produced 10 goals in his last 10 appearances for England.

Sterling may have had some issues before with the team because of his altercation with teammate Joe Gomez back in November. However, he will be needed more than ever if the Three Lions would want to win their first ever UEFA Euro championship.

 

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SBOBET 04-Mar 2020 Wednesday 2:26 PM (156 days ago)            #4
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Euro 2020: Five Dark Horses

24 teams, 12 venues and a month of drama, and of course, controversy awaits in June, as Euro 2020 prepares to set the world of football alight.

With stars including Cristiano Ronaldo, Virgil van Dijk, Harry Kane and Antoine Griezmann lining up, we’re sure to have a 30-day blast between 12th of June and 12th of July, and we’ll be there every step of the way with SBOBET.

This will be the first European tournament to be played across multiple nations, kicking off in Rome where hosts Italy will take on Turkey, and ending with the showcase final at Wembley Stadium in London.

The early Euro 2020 betting odds have elevated England to be favourites, though France and Belgium are not far behind.

The Euro 2020 Playoffs take place in March and then we’ll know the final line-up. But for now, let’s take a look at five dark horses to cause an upset.

 

Germany to qualify from Group of Death

It almost feels disrespectful to categorise Germany as a dark horse, but having witnessed their lame performance at Russia 2018 I labelled them a donkey, and now that is disrespectful!

But hands up, they won their Euro 2020 group in impressive style, overcoming the Netherlands and finishing with 21 points.

Group F has taken the mantle of Euro 2020 Group of Death, and as such a big name could crash out.

But head coach Joachim Low has got his team back on the right track by introducing some fresh legs, and striker Serge Gnabry has been sensational. The FC Bayern youngster rounded off the group with a hat-trick against Northern Ireland and he could be one of the stars of Euro 2020.

In a group containing world champions France and Ronaldo’s Portugal, Germany has a much harder task than the one they fluffed in 2018. But if the resurgence continues then they could take a top two place and guaranteed progress.

 

Kosovo to make the finals

The playoffs have thrown up some fascinating clashes, and Europe’s newest football nation has a real chance of qualifying for the final 24.

Kosovo, ranked 115th in the world, came to the world’s notice with a battling performance to take third place in Group A - finishing ahead of Bulgaria and Montenegro while giving England a scare.

In Vedat Muriqi, Fenerbahche’s 6-foot-4 striker, Kosovo have an aerial threat which could be enough to see them through Pathway D. They have a winnable tie against North Macedonia followed by a final versus Georgia or Belarus.

 

Wales to make the quarterfinals

The Welsh left it late to qualify emerging victorious from a winner take all clash with Hungary, thanks to a brace from Juventus star Aaron Ramsay, but head coach Ryan Giggs will hope he can take his team deep into the competition.

Wales will look to surprise more than one opponent during the Euro 2020
Aaron Ramsey in action for Wales during their Euro 2020 qualifiers against Hungary

Wales overachieved in 2016 with a fantastic run all the way to the semi-finals. But with players like Ramsay, Real Madrid’s Gareth Bale and Manchester United’s Dan James, the Welsh have plenty of creative muscle.

I think they can navigate a tough group containing Italy, Switzerland and Turkey, but with little squad depth the last eight would be another great achievement.

 

Russia’s revival to continue

Hosting the 2018 World Cup went better than any Russian fan could imagine as Stanislav Cherchesov guided his unfancied side to the quarter finals, where they were eventually ousted on penalties by finalists Croatia.

Russia had already beaten one of the tournament favourites in Spain in a shootout, while striker Denis Cheryshev helped himself to four goals and an own goal.

Russia finished second to Belgium in qualifying and they meet again in Group B. The Red Devils are still ranked first in world football, while Russia are 38th. They are joined by Denmark, ranked 16th and outsiders Finland.

Russia vs. Denmark is the big game.



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The future’s Oranje!

For a dark horse tournament winner I’m taking a look at the Netherlands.

Ronald Koeman’s side is ranked 14th in the world and they finished behind Germany on the group stages, but there is a balanced look to Koeman’s side, not to mention the best centre back team in the world.

Virgil van Dijk and Matthijs de Ligt are a colossal pairing and the young Juve player is learning quickly, so he’s sure to feature heavily in the Euro 2020 highlights.

Van Dijk’s Liverpool teammate Gigi Wijnaldum has had another superb season in midfield, and alongside Barcelona’s Frenkie de Jong and Ajax’s Donny van de Beek he will prosper at Euro 2020.

Up front, former Manchester United man Memphis Depay has grown in confidence at Lyon.

The Dutch have had a kind draw, with Ukraine, Austria and maybe Kosovo in their group. Let’s see how far they can go.

 

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SBOBET 04-Mar 2020 Wednesday 2:28 PM (156 days ago)            #5
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Euro 2020: When There’s CR7, There’s Always a Chance!

When people throw up the evergreen question to me about who is the greatest footballer, Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi, I find myself giving the same stock answer.

Both are simply geniuses, arguably the two greatest players the world has ever seen – I don’t say that lightly – and if they had been born in any other era, they would probably have ended up with 10 world footballer of the year gongs each instead of 11 between them.

However, while I can’t separate two individuals who possess different yet quite brilliant attributes, I always lean towards Ronaldo, who will lead Portugal in Euro 2020.

That maybe because as a Manchester United fan I am biased but it is also because of his sheer athleticism as well as what I consider to be proof of his crowning glory which came in the summer of 2016: the year he led Portugal to its first-ever international title.

A team of good but hardly outstanding individuals who overcame the challenges of much better sides to be crowned European champions.

How a player fares with his national team should hardly determine greatness. After all, George Best was always unlikely to reach a major finals playing for Northern Ireland.

Johan Cruyff guided Holland to the World Cup runners-up spot in 1974 but never won the competition or enjoyed European Championship success.

Portugal are aiming to retain their crown at Euro 2020
Portugal celebrates winning UEFA Nations League

But the fact that Ronaldo was able to guide his nation to this title in an era when Messi, with a better side around him, had missed out on the world stage with Argentina, tips the scales in his favour for me.

On saying all of that, do I think Portugal have a chance of retaining the crown at Euro 2020 this summer? Not a chance! Look at the SBOBET Euro 2020 betting odds and you will see where they are placed.

Popular coach Fernando Santos has to be bullish, of course he does.

No one will forget that triumph on French soil four years ago, and they followed that up by putting the young talented upstarts of Holland in their place in last summer’s Nations League.

Starting as very much the underdogs to the French team playing on home soil, losing its one true star so early in the game, the Portuguese still held on into extra-time. There they contrived to score the spectacular goal through Eder, a modest substitute, which gave them the trophy.

Against hosts facing depleted opponents, playing in front of ecstatic support on their own turf, the Portuguese could have been excused for wilting after the loss of Ronaldo, but they showed remarkable morale and courage.

Yet there are just too many ordinary players on this particular side, and I mean that most respectfully. It's hard to see lightning striking twice, even with a genius such as CR7.

There is talent to create Euro 2020 highlights, of course there is. Any side with the likes of goalkeeper Rui Patricio, Ruben Neves, Joao Moutinho and Bernardo Silva in their ranks deserve to be respected.

And if new Manchester United signing Bruno Fernandes and Atletico Madrid record recruit Joao Felix deliver for their country, Portugal can be a match for anyone.

But the fact that Ronaldo is now 35 by and that Portugal have been placed in what has been termed a ‘Group of Death’ merely confirms my stance.

 


 

 

The fact that Ukraine did not lose during qualification and topped a group that included the reigning champions probably counts for little. But it does suggest that if Ronaldo is missing, or has a rare off-day, there are few others who can rise to the occasion or lift the team in the way this one-man inspiration has done on countless occasions.

Remember, this is still a player who is showing no signs of slowing down for club or country as he is regularly finding the net for Juventus, and scored 11 during Portugal’s qualification campaign.

A country with a population of just 10.3 million, with 292 professional soccer players in 45 countries beyond its borders, should have no right to be champions of  Europe, yet the genius of one man can inspire others.

This is likely to be Ronaldo’s international curtain call and he has long had nothing left to prove.

So yes, the Seleção remain an outside bet and I wouldn’t put money on them - but with Ronaldo at the helm, it seems you can never quite bet against them!

 

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SBOBET 04-Mar 2020 Wednesday 2:30 PM (156 days ago)            #6
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Euro 2020: Can England End 54 Years of Hurt?

We’re in the midst of the Premier League winter break, and last weekend Burnley didn’t have a game, which led to me thinking about matters further afield.

And as many an English football supporter muses for every two years, “Could this actually be our year?’”

Well it looked that way, briefly at Russia 2018, before those pesky Croatians scuppered Gareth Southgate’s dream. So now we look to Euro 2020 and I’ll run the rule over England, the tournament favourites.

Gareth Southgate’s men will surely navigate Group D in their draw probably alongside World Cup 2018 finalists Croatia, but how far can they go?

The SBOBET odds on the outright winner are already out, so I’m asking whether the Three Lions are good value at 5.00.

Plenty can change between now and June. But for the moment, Southgate’s boys are rated higher than Belgium at 6.00, France at 7.00 and the Netherlands at 7.50.

Belgium and France are numbers one and two in the FIFA World Rankings with England fourth and the Netherlands 14th.

 

Can Kane stay fit?

England’s dreams rest, in part, on the fitness of their captain and talisman Harry Kane who is injured this time with a hamstring problem. But King Harry is making a good recovery and Spurs boss Jose Mourinho thinks he may be ready to make an appearance before the end of the domestic campaign.

Harry Kane is expected to return before the end of the season and the England captain is hopeful to be fit for Euro 2020
England captain Harry Kane is sidelined due to hamstring injury and still in doubt to play in Euro 2020

That’s great news for England since the boy is prolific. Kane scored a first half hat-trick against Montenegro as the Three Lions charged into the Finals with a thumping 7-0 victory, and he became the first England player to score in every game of a qualifying campaign when England finished off with a win over Kosovo.

He’s scored 32 goals in 45 games for England, winning the World Cup Golden Boot in Russia as the Three Lions finished fourth. In the run up to summer, Kane is sure to be making the big Euro 2020 news.

 

Sterling’s concerning form

England are also sweating on the fitness of the Manchester United striker Marcus

Rashford, who is suffering a back injury. So the form of Raheem Sterling is another niggling concern.

His spectacular early season performances drew comparisons with Lionel Messi and he has been scoring for fun, until the turn of the year that is. The England winger has missed a hatful of chances as Manchester City’s form slumped, going eight games without a goal.

Kane can’t do it on his own even at full fitness, so Southgate will do all he can to get Sterling in the right place.

He has options with the emergence of two exciting young stars at Leicester City in Harvey Barnes and James Maddison, but the England boss wants all his best players firing as they did in Russia.

Manchester United’s Jesse Lingard looks highly unlikely to recapture his 2018 form so Sterling is a crucial factor in England’s potential success.

 

Gareth’s Goalkeeper dilemma

The last time England won a major trophy in the 1966 World Cup, manager Alf Ramsay could count on his man between the sticks, the legendary Gordon Banks.

Who will ever forget Banks’ breathtaking save to deny the great Pele in 1970? If you haven’t seen it, check it out.

What Southgate would do for another Gordon Banks right now? There is plenty of goalkeeping talent around at the moment and the Premier League is blessed by the best keepers in the world. But in terms of England keepers do we have the all round package?

Everton’s Jordan Pickford held the position in Russia, making some good saves along the way but his best feature remains his distribution. He’s very comfortable with the ball at his feet but has developed an alarming knack of dropping clangers at crucial times, notably against Liverpool.

That was a trait which saw the end of Joe Hart and not one suffered by Burnley’s Nick Pope, who is a traditional keeper with command of his area, safe hands, quick reactions and improving distribution.

Both keepers have conceded 38 goals in the Premier League this season, and it’s easy to make a case for either.

But then there’s a third name in the frame. Manchester United’s Dean Henderson, on loan at Sheffield United, has had a superb season. He has conceded just 24 goals and is the main reason the Blades have exceeded expectations.

Only Liverpool’s Alisson has a higher save percentage at 87%, than Henderson’s 75%. The 22-year-old is certainly one for the future, but is he one for the now?

The early Euro 2020 betting odds reckon England have as good a chance as anyone, but they need three things to go their way as mentioned: Kane’s fitness, Sterling’s form and a near faultless keeper.

 

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SBOBET 04-Mar 2020 Wednesday 2:32 PM (156 days ago)            #7
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Euro 2020: Play-Off Drama To Come!

The best players in Europe are heading for the Euro 2020 extravaganza in June, and I for one can hardly wait. England, France and Belgium are the most fancied nations, but the Netherlands, Spain and Germany are sure to have something to say about that.

The Euro 2020 betting odds have England as the marginal favourites but much could change between now and summer.

And for starters we have the play-offs, kicking off on 26th March; and there are some tasty talents on show even at this stage. Let’s take a look at three of the biggest stars, but first a run through of who’s facing who.

 

So which teams are going through?

Bosnia and Herzegovina vs Northern Ireland

This is a tough assignment for Northern Ireland against a side with real quality. Bosnia had some big wins in Group J, including a 4-1 hammering of qualifiers Finland. Inconsistency dogged the Bosnians, but on paper they should have too much for the Irish.

Leicester City’s centre back Jonny Evans is a key man for the underdogs but the men in green lack any serious firepower.

It’s no surprise that Bosnia are as short as 1.39 to go through, but Northern Ireland are 13 places above Bosnia in the FIFA World Rankings, at 36th so I’d say the better value is the Greens at 2.81.

Georgia vs Belarus

Georgia found themselves in the devilishly difficult Group D, and eventually finished fourth behind Switzerland, Denmark and the Republic of Ireland.

Meanwhile Belarus hardly had it any easier, landing in the midst of the Group C battle between Germany and the Netherlands.

At 1.65 Georgia should navigate this tie, with Belarus out at 2.33.

Republic of North Macedonia vs Kosovo

The new boys of international football Kosovo gave England a fright at Wembley, eventually losing 5-3, while Macedonia came third in a fairly even group containing Poland and Austria, and are favourites to win this tie at odds of 1.70.

I’ve a soft spot for Kosovo who play without fear, so I’ll be backing them at 2.16.

Euro 2020: Aleksandar Kolarov is considered a powerhouse at the back of Serbia
Aleksandar Kolarov playing for AS Roma against Bologna

Norway vs Serbia

According to the latest SBOBET odds this is the tie of the play-offs between two sides bang in form. Norway are unbeaten in six, while Serbia have won four from the last five.

There’s little to choose between them, Norway at odds of 1.89 and Serbia at 1.95.

Serbia Captain Aleksandar Kolarov is a defensive rock with a shot like a rocket, while Bournemouth striker Josh King has pace to burn for Norway.

On balance it’s Serbia for me.

Slovakia vs Republic of Ireland

One of the most gifted players in the world comes up against Premier League grit as Slovakia’s Marek Hamsik, now playing in China will hope to take his team through to the finals.

The Republic of Ireland’s Matt Doherty, Jeff Hendrick and Shane Duffy are all battlers and at odds of 2.17 they have every chance if frustrating Slovakia at 1.69.

Bulgaria vs Hungary

This is a tie between tow out of form sides. Hungary have five defeats in six, with just a solitary win against Azerbaijan, while Bulgaria have four defeats in six, but signed off their qualifying campaign with a 1-0 win over the Czech Republic.

The Fifa rankings, Hungary 52nd and Bulgaria at 59th reflect their malaise, but at 1.66 Hungary will hope to stop Bulgaria’s campaign.

Iceland vs Romania

Romania had high hopes of qualifying from Group F, but a draw with Norway followed by defeats to Spain and Sweden put an end to that ambition.

 


 

 

They now come up against a side which has made a habit of qualifying for finals, inspired by Everton’s playmaker Gylfi Sigurdsson, and the Icemen may have Burnley winger Johann Berg Gudmundsson available after injury.

Iceland at 1.62 should be too tough for Romania at 2.28

Scotland vs Israel

Scotland won their last three games, all expected victories, after they had suffered back to back 4-0 losses at the hands of Belgium and Russia. And at odds of 1.37 they should surely see off Israel.

Their opponents came fifth in Group G, finishing above only Latvia, and it would be major Euro 2020 news if Israel was to make it through at the expense of the Scots.

 

Three players to look out for

Andy Robertson: Scotland

This gifted wingback is a key player in Liverpool’s march to a first Premier League title in 30 years, and as one of the first names on the team-sheet, he will have a big part to play in the Reds Champions League defence.

Equally impressive at the back as well as raiding down the wing, he has one of the best deliveries in football and would definitely grace the finals.

Miralem Pjanic : Bosnia

The Juventus midfielder is blessed with the ability to score and create goals, and as a big star in Serie A’s serial winners, he’s the main reason Bosnia are fancied to see off Northern Ireland.

Dusan Tadic: Serbia

Tadic didn’t really realise his potential with Southampton in the Premier League, but his 37 goals in 56 games for an exciting Ajax side show just what a talent he is.

With 67 caps he’s a key member of Serbia’s attack and will have a big part to play against Norway.

 

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SBOBET 04-Mar 2020 Wednesday 2:39 PM (156 days ago)            #8
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Euro 2020: Don’t Underestimate the Azzurri

This upcoming Euro 2020 feels like one of the most open European champions in recent memory. Of course, you have the tournament's top contenders according to SBOBET odds, but none of those teams seems overly dominant and still have their issues to sort out.

And outside of that top five are defending champions Portugal, who shouldn't be ruled out as long as Cristiano Ronaldo is still around. However, there are some question marks as to how far he can take a squad that isn't quite as strong.

But one country that appears to be getting a bit overlooked is Italy. The Azzurri completed an amazing qualifying campaign where they were just one of two countries with a perfect record.

Yet despite their impressive showing, the Euro 2020 betting odds still have them priced at just 11.00, which is below the very top contenders for the competition.

It feels like a mistake to underestimate Italy, who have been drawn into a relatively easy Group A with Switzerland, Turkey, and Wales. The Azzurri have shown impressive improvements under manager Roberto Mancini and appear to have what it takes to go far in the tournament.

 

Mancini remakes defence

It's been so far so good for Roberto Mancini. Since taking over the side in 2018 following the disastrous Giampiero Ventura regime, Mancini has gotten the Azzurri back on track with 14 wins, four draws, and just two defeats in his 20 matches in charge.

"Mancio" has done well to refresh an ageing side by giving some younger players a chance to break into the squad. He's also gotten the Italians back to their roots: defence.

Italy top their group in Euro 2020 Qualifiers
Italy head coach Roberto Mancini giving instructions to his players from the touchline

Italy conceded just four goals in the entire qualifying campaign, with Belgium and Turkey (3) the only countries with fewer. Granted, Italy's group of Finland, Greece, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Armenia, and Liechtenstein is hardly the strongest, but still, it's a step in the right direction.

Gianluigi Donnarumma is one of the most highly-rated young goalkeepers in the world, and he will be eager to showcase his talents in his first career major tournament.

He will certainly not be lacking in defensive cover, with the experienced Juventus duo of Leonardo Bonucci and Giorgio Chiellini set to start at centre-back. And with Alessio Romagnoli and Francesco Acerbi, there is adequate cover.

 

Maybe the best midfield in Europe

Italy's defensive renaissance also has much to do with the massive improvement in midfield. Mancini's decision to put together the trio of Jorginho, Marco Verratti, and Nicolo Barella has been an inspired one. Those three complement each other so well: Jorginho provides the pinpoint passing and rhythm, Barella provides energy and forward runs, and Verratti does a little bit of everything.

They have emerged as the biggest strength of this Italy side and, barring injury or a horrific dip in form, all three should be secured of a starting spot in Euro 2020. The likes of Stefano Sensi, Lorenzo Pellegrini, and teenage sensation Sandro Tonali will have to settle for backup duties.

Looking around at the rest of the tournament, one would be hard-pressed to find a more optimal midfield combination than Italy's. France arguably boast more talent, but two of their main midfielders, Paul Pogba and N'Golo Kante, have been beset by injuries this season and might not be at their best come the tournament. Spain also have the weapons, but they've not quite created the same cohesion.

With a midfield as solid as Italy's, they will be a handful for any side in the tournament to break down and could go see them make another deep run.

 

Will the Azzurri attack deliver?

On the other hand, though, the biggest reason why that might not happen is because of their attack. That might be a bit surprising for a side that scored 37 goals in 10 qualifying games (second only to Belgium with 40), but it's true.

Italy have struggled to find a reliable No. 9 for some time now, and it continues to be a question mark heading into Euro 2020. Their top scorer in qualifying was Andrea Belotti with just four goals. Although, he appears set to back up Ciro Immobile, who has been simply sensational for Lazio this season.

Immobile is the current top scorer in the five major European leagues with 26 goals in Serie A. However, he has not proven to be quite as prolific with the national team. He has just 10 goals in 39 international caps.

Mancini tried out several different options during qualifying and friendlies, even going with a striker-less system at one point. But if Immobile continues with his amazing run, he should be the first-choice striker heading into the tournament.

Lorenzo Insigne and Federico Chiesa are the top contenders to support Immobile from the wings, while veteran Fabio Quagliarella could also get in the squad as a super sub.

But while the pressure will be on Immobile to deliver and create Euro 2020 highlights, Italy have shown in the past that a top goalscorer isn't absolutely necessary to win a major tournament. Luca Toni and Marco Materazzi were their top scorers in 2006 when they went on to win the World Cup.

If the defence can hold up well enough as they did in that tournament and if they can continue to get goals from different parts of the team as they did in qualifying, the Italians will surely be one of the teams to be reckoned with in Euro 2020.

 

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SBOBET 04-Mar 2020 Wednesday 2:44 PM (156 days ago)            #9
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Euro 2020: Watch Out for the Spanish Armada

There’s a good reason why Spain are considered a top-five contender in the Euro 2020. And for sure, they will be a team on a mission as they try to get back on the mountaintop once more.

The three-time UEFA European champions last won it all in 2012. And in their last go-around in 2016, they were unceremoniously dumped by a resurgent Italian squad led by the likes of Giorgio Chiellini, Ciro Immobile, and Federico Bernardeschi.

In last year’s Euro 2020 qualifiers, the Spaniards left no things to chance by going undefeated in the group stage matches. They dominated Group F and finished with eight wins and two draws.

Prior to the qualifiers, Luis Enrique had to step down to take care of his sick daughter, and that put deputy boss Roberto Moreno in charge for the Spanish national team to which he has done a splendid job. Just after they finished the group stages, Enrique was reappointed once more to take over from there.

There are still a lot of question marks that La Roja need to deal with as they go along with their campaign. This year’s European showcase looks to be wide open as the playing field has become super competitive.

Spain are placed in Group E along with the likes of Sweden and Poland - two emerging sides who should give them a run for their money.

Can the Spaniards win it all again this time despite having lower Euro 2020 odds? SBOBET takes a look on their chances in this upcoming competition.

 

Young guns providing a huge boost

Spain obviously have one of the deepest teams in the world, which gives team manager Luis Enrique a bevy of options every game.

From having experienced heads in Santi Cazorla, Sergio Ramos, Jordi Alba, David de Gea, and Sergio Busquets, the team also has the likes of Mikel Oyarzabal, Jose Gaya, Fabian Ruiz, Marco Asensio, and Saul Niguez as part of their ongoing youth movement.

The young guns have impressed so far in the tournament as they provided us some notable Euro 2020 highlights, helping Spain become one of the most prolific scoring teams in the group stages. They were fourth overall with 31 goals just behind the likes of Belgium, England, and Italy.

Fabian Ruiz in particular has been superb serving as the team’s playmaker from the midfield while Mikel Oyarzabal and Jose Gaya showed glimpses of their potential by netting goals of their own.

A bigger responsibility awaits for these young bloods as they try to make a deep run in the tournament. This is the perfect time for them to shine and lead the squad to the promise land.

 

Sergio Ramos, Jordi Alba and Sergio Busquets are the glue guys

Scoring goals may be a given for the Spaniards, but the difference between winning and losing at this stage lies on their consistency on the defencive end, and this is where the likes of Sergio Ramos, Jordi Alba, and Sergio Busquets come in.

The said trio is in the midst of their primes and they offer a lot of intangibles for the Luis Enrique-coached squad.

Luis Enrique and La Roja squad aim to win it all again this time despite having lower Euro 2020 odds
Spain manager Luis Enrique looks over the pitch before Group F Euro 2020 qualifying match against Norway at Mestalla Stadium

Sergio Ramos in particular will be a key player to watch out for Spain as he brings toughness, experience, and playmaking. He will be tasked to be the team’s captain as he just surpassed legendary keeper Iker Casillas for being the most-capped player ever in national team history.

Barca teammates Jordi Alba and Sergio Busquets also offer those things for Luis Enrique. But more importantly, they can serve as mentors to the likes of Pablo Sarabia, Diego Llorente, and Jose Gaya.

With Spain playing a 4-3-3 formation, opponents will have a very hard time in scoring goals against them. They’ve only given up five goals in the group stages and that is a great sign if you’re Luis Enrique.

 

Spain’s goalkeeper concern

Looking at their lineup, perhaps one of La Roja’s weaker points will be at the goal keeper position.

Team boss Luis Enrique will have to choose between an older David de Gea or Kepa Arrizabalaga, who has been struggling to find his form lately for Chelsea.

David de Gea is a superb goal keeper no doubt, but his fitness remains a concern due to the injuries that he’s suffered over this past year. The 29-year-old goal keeper had some trouble with his groin and hamstring due to the wear and tear playing for both Manchester United and Spain.

On the other hand, Kepa Arrizabalaga’s form will be a concern as well since he has been usurped by Willy Caballero in Stamford Bridge for the fifth straight game, sparking rumours that Frank Lampard is planning to sell the Spanish stopper come summer time.

It will be a hard decision to make if you’re Luis Enrique, but he will have a chance to figure it out as they will play some friendly matches against Germany, Netherlands, and Portugal over the next month.

 

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SBOBET 04-Mar 2020 Wednesday 2:46 PM (156 days ago)            #10
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Euro 2020: More Glory for Les Bleus?

They were comfortably the best team at Russia 2018 and fans throughout Europe will be on the lookout for France when Euro 2020 kicks off in the summer.

Didier Deschamps side played the best football in Russia, with world-class players running right through the squad; but it will be the flamboyance, pace and ruthlessness of Les Bleus attack that most fans, and opponents, will remember.

The last time France won the World Cup, in 1998, they followed that with a European Championship triumph two years later so what price them repeating that feat this year? Well the latest Euro 2020 betting odds here at SBOBET have the World Champions third favourites, at odds of 7.00, but there is very little to choose between the front runners.

With the playoffs still to come we don’t yet have the full list of nations, but France is in a group of eight or nine potential winners. They have won this tournament twice, the first time in 1984, and Les Bleus are sure to be in the mix again.

 


 

 

Deschamps the legend

France won the World Cup for the second time in 2018 with a 4-2 win over Croatia in Moscow. And head coach Didier Deschamps became the third man to win the competition as a player and coach, having captained Les Bleus to victory on home soil in 1998.

As a cultured midfielder Deschamps was the heartbeat of that side and the group of players he now coaches exudes class in the image of the 1998 World Champions.

Antoine Griezmann, Paul Pogba and Kylian MBappe were all on target in the World Cup final and, injuries permitting, will all be on the European stage in just over three months time.

 

M’Bappe could be the best in the world

Kylian Mbappe wowed fans in Russia with his scintillating pace, lightning-quick feet and ability to score goals of any type, the tap-in, the slide rule finish and the thunderbolt.

The 21-year-old Paris Saint Germain striker is sure to be in the Euro 2020 news over the summer and with 13 international goals already to his name, he could be the man to catch the current France top scorer, Thierry Henry, who finished with 51.

That’s if Antoine Griezmann doesn’t get there first. The former Atletico Madrid striker has settled into life at Barcelona and scored a crucial away goal in the Blaugrana’s 1-1 draw with Napoli in the Champions League.

And at 28 years of age with 30 goals for France, he is well in the hunt too. And look out for FC Bayern’s Kingsley Coman, who could also make a big impact.

Behind the strikers N’Golo Kante runs the midfield, Raphael Varane leads the defence and Captain Hugo Lloris is the man between the sticks.

Les Bleus will take some beating.

Didier Deschamps ready to line up his best France XI in the upcoming Euro 2020 tournament
Didier Deschamps became the third man to win the competition as a player and coach

 

Which teams are the biggest threats?

So who are the teams most likely to frustrate France?

 

England @ 5.00

Gareth Southgate’s Lions came very close in Russia, losing in the semi-final to Croatia having led thanks to a Kieran Trippier free-kick. They are the favourites to win Euro 2020 but much will depend on the fitness of their captain and main striker Harry Kane, who is out of action with a long term injury. The Spurs man won the Golden Boot in Russia and is very capable of repeating that in 2020.

While Southgate has an exciting young squad, with the likes of Raheem Sterling able to rip any defence apart, they really need their captain to be fully fit.

 

Belgium @ 6.00

Roberto Martinez’ Red Devils are the only side ahead of Les Bleus in the FIFA World Rankings. England aren’t far behind in fourth but when you look at the quality in Belgium’s squad it’s hard to believe this golden generation hasn’t won anything. Kevin de Bruyne is having another exceptional season at Manchester City while striker Romelu Lukaku has settled well at Inter Milan, scoring 17 league goals already, quite an achievement in Serie A.

 

Netherlands @ 7.50

Having failed to qualify for Russia 2018 Ronald Koeman’s Netherlands have come back well and look a genuine contender for Euro 2020. The stand-out feature of the reborn Oranje is the centre back pairing of Virgil van Dijk and Matthijs de Ligt, arguably the best in the world.

22-year-old Frenkie de Jong is now fulfilling his potential at Barcelona, while Quincy Promes is a livewire upfront, so keep an eye on these boys.

Spain, Germany, Italy and Portugal will be in the shake-up too in what promises to be a fantastic tournament.

 

 

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SBOBET 11-Mar 2020 Wednesday 2:46 PM (149 days ago)            #11
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Euro 2020: Three Lions and Home Following Can Be a Potent Mix

It’s just over three months until the start of this summer’s big football spectacle.

The European Championships (or Euro 2020 as it will be known) this year will be played for the first time across a host of nations.

One of those venues is Wembley Stadium in London, and one thing history tells us is that when England host a major tournament, they tend to do rather well.

OK, so it’s only happened twice: The 1966 World Cup, when the "Three Lions" were crowned world champions, and Euro 1996, when a penalty shoot-out defeat against arch-rivals Germany cruelly ended their chances at the semi-final stage.

Gareth South aims to lead the England squad to a Euro 2020 trophy, one that he failed to do during the 1996 edition of the tournament
Gareth Southgate during his stint with the England national squad in 1996

It’s fair to say – or certainly, this SBOBET observer believes – that Gareth Southgate’s class of 2020 lacks the overall quality both the '66 and '96 boys possessed in abundance.

It is also one of football’s great quirks that Southgate, who failed to net a vital penalty in that shoot-out almost 24 years ago, is now leading his country back to where all the drama unfolded – Wembley Stadium.

Had England have failed to reach a tournament partly on home soil it would have been an embarrassment.

Had England not topped a group – they concluded their campaign in style last November – that contained mainly minnows, it would also have been an embarrassment.

The truth, though, is that the real work starts on June 14 when Croatia are the visitors, closely followed by as-yet-unknown opponents, and the Czech Republic.

Croatia were, of course, the side which broke English hearts at the World Cup nearly two years ago, but England have since exacted a modicum of revenge by beating them in the Nations League.



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Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.

 

 

As it stands, the two goalscorers in that game may not even feature.

Of course, if skipper Harry Kane does recover in time – as he is on course to –he will almost certainly lead the line.

His leadership abilities and goalscoring record deserve immediate inclusion.

For Jesse Lingard, who has hardly featured for Manchester United of late, he has a struggle to get back into his club side, let alone his country.

So, who else should we expect in Southgate’s squad injuries (and suspensions) permitting?

In goal, Everton keeper Jordan Pickford fails to fully convince, but have his deputies enough experience?

The main challengers are surely on-loan Sheffield United shot-stopper Dean Henderson and Burnley’s Nick Pope, who made his first England start in their last fixture – a 4-0 win in Kosovo.

The 27-year-old will surely come under consideration for a starting spot at Euro 2020 if he continues his impressive form.

In front of them, Harry Maguire and Joe Gomez are likely to be Southgate's preferred centre-back partnership. But should he opt for a back three because, let's be honest, the England rearguard no longer has players of the calibre of Tony Adams, Rio Ferdinand, Sol Campbell etc. – again, in my opinion.

If that is the case, then Kyle Walker or Aaron Wan-Bissaka have to be considered, if fit.

The left-back spot (Ben Chilwell, Danny Rose, Luke Shaw et al.) is not as clear-cut, while at right-back, Walker, Wan Bissaka, and Trent Alexander-Arnold deserve to be included but Liverpool’s young starlet would possibly be a better bet as an attacking wing-back, given his superb record of assists this term.

I’d certainly include Aston Villa's Tyrone Mings in the squad based on his form this term.

In the centre of the park, I do not think it’s as clear-cut. Southgate will have his certs with the Jordan Henderson, Dele Alli and James Maddison but, personally, I’d like to see players such as Phil Foden (if he played regularly for his club), Jack Grealish, Ross Barkley and the versatile James Ward-Prowse enter the conversation.

Up front, assuming Kane and Marcus Rashford – out since January with a double stress fracture in his back – are back, then Jadon Sancho and Raheem Sterling are certs and, if he can continue his form, I would also like to see Everton’s Dominic Calvert-Lewin come into the reckoning.

Those players would create some Euro 2020 highlights for England, surely?

Keep an eye on the Euro 2020 betting odds and wait until nearer the time – when the squads are announced and the full groups are known.

England are worth a punt, but I would not go as far as to say they are ready to reach the final.

If England win their group, their last-16 tie would be in Dublin against the runners-up in a hugely competitive looking Group F - which already includes Germany, France and Portugal - with a potential quarter-final in Rome.

Should they finish second, it would be a trip to Copenhagen against the runner-up from Group E, which features Spain, before a quarter-final in St Petersburg. There are other possibilities if they are one of the best third-place finishers.

However, remember, tradition tells us that with a surge of optimism and home support, anything can happen.

 

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SBOBET 11-Mar 2020 Wednesday 2:49 PM (149 days ago)            #12
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Euro 2020: Uncertainty Looms as 100-Day Countdown Begins

Wednesday, March 4th marks exactly 100 days until the start of Euro 2020. But as the tournament continues to get closer, there is still much uncertainty amid the growing threat of the coronavirus in the continent.

UEFA have come out and said that Euro 2020 will push through as planned, although a lot could still change in the three-plus months before the tournament officially kicks off.

Meanwhile, uncertainty also looms surrounding one of the tournament's top contenders in England, with manager Gareth Southgate still hoping for the availability of two of his star players.

Elsewhere, Ireland have been handed a significant injury blow ahead of their crucial Euro 2020 play-off against Slovakia later in the month.

  UEFA 'confident' Euros will go ahead amid coronavirus outbreak

UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin expressed confidence that they can deal with any worst-case scenario that may arise during the upcoming Euro 2020 amid the spread of the coronavirus.

"Let's be optimistic and not talk about dark scenarios," Ceferin said at a media conference in Amsterdam.

"You don't know how many concerns we have when we organize a big competition ... we have security concerns, we have political instability concerns and one of those concerns is the virus. We are dealing with it and we are confident that we can deal with it."

Italy is the European country hit the hardest by the spread of the coronavirus. Several Serie A matches have postponed over the last two weeks, including the much-anticipated Derby d'Italia between Juventus and Inter.

The Italian capital Rome is one of the 12 host venues for Euro 2020, which will be played all across the continent for the first time.

While Ceferin is confident Euro 2020 will go on as planned, FIFA president Gianni Infantino has at least opened the door for the possibility that upcoming international fixtures, which include friendlies as well as the semi-final round of Euro 2020 qualifying play-offs, might be postponed due to the virus.

"I wouldn't exclude anything at this moment. That's why we have to look at the situation and hope that it will decrease rather than increase. At the moment it looks like it is still increasing.

"If games have to be postponed or played without spectators until it is over, then we have to go through that."

  Gareth Southgate hoping Harry Kane, Marcus Rashford will be fit for Euros
England are hoping for Harry Kane to return before Euro 2020 starts
Harry Kane being substituted in Tottenham Hotspur's match against Southampton

England manager Gareth Southgate remains optimistic about injured strikers Harry Kane and Marcus Rashford getting back to full fitness in time to play in Euro 2020.

“We’ve had really good updates right the way through and Harry and Marcus are exactly where we were expecting them to be,” Southgate said. “Both players will give themselves the best possible chance of being available, that’s their mentality and that’s their dedication to their sport.

“That’s the only bit we can guarantee, what we can’t guarantee is how that rehab will develop as it’s stepped up and as it becomes more intense. But they are both on track from the information we were given at the very start.”

Kane has been sidelined since suffering a torn hamstring on New Year's Day. He'd played 25 games for Tottenham this season, scoring 17 goals with two assists.

Meanwhile, Rashford has been out after he suffered a double stress fracture in his back in late January. The 22-year-old had been having a terrific season for Manchester United, scoring a career-best 19 goals (14 in the league) in just 31 appearances in all competitions.

The presence of Kane and/or Rashford in the squad would be a huge boost to England's Euro 2020 odds, although much will also depend on their actual fitness and sharpness after long layoffs.

If neither Kane nor Rashford can make it to the Euros, the likes of Tammy Abraham, Danny Ings, and Dominic Calvert-Lewin will be left as Southgate's main options to lead the line and produce some Euro 2020 highlights for the Three Lions.

Southgate will have the opportunity to give those players a run-out when England host Italy for a friendly at Wembley -- if it's not postponed.

  Seamus Coleman to miss Republic of Ireland's Euro 2020 play-off

Republic of Ireland manager Mick McCarthy is unlikely to have veteran defender Seamus Coleman for their Euro 2020 play-off against Slovakia.

Coleman suffered a quad muscle injury in Everton's 1-1 draw against Manchester United on Sunday.

"Seamus is struggling for the games. I'm told it could be four to six weeks," McCarthy told RTE Sport.

The Irish face Slovakia in Bratislava on 26 March. The winner of that match will face the winner of the Northern Ireland vs Slovakia semi-final with a place at Euro 2020 on the line.

SBOBET odds have the Republic of Ireland as slight 2.95 underdogs, with Slovakia priced at 2.15 to win at home.

Coleman's absence would be a blow to McCarthy and Ireland. The Everton defender is one of the most experienced players on the squad with 56 career caps.

If Coleman is ruled out, Wolverhampton Wanderers defender Matt Doherty is likely to start at right-back with Fulham's Cyrus Christie also providing cover for the full-back role.

Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.

 

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SBOBET 13-Apr 2020 Monday 12:05 PM (116 days ago)            #13
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Euro 2020: Can Belgium’s Golden Generation Finally Win the Big One?

The upcoming Euro 2020 will be a big one for Belgium. The Red Devils’ “golden generation” remain in search of that elusive first major international title, and this tournament will likely be their best opportunity to win it.

Belgium — the No. 1 team in the world according to the FIFA rankings — are one of the top contenders to win the Euros, and rightly so. They were the most impressive side during qualifying as they amassed a perfect 10 wins out of 10 while scoring the most goals (40) and tied for the fewest (3).

Their squad is one of the most talented in the entire field, with world-class quality at nearly every position. They made it to the quarter-finals of the last Euros in 2016 and came even closer in the 2018 World Cup, where they finished in third. But they are not getting any younger, so it’s now or never for the Red Devils.

Will this finally be the year the golden generation get over the hump and deliver some silverware? Allow SBOBET to lay out the case for why they will (or won’t) do so at Euro 2020.

 

The Case For BelgiumBelgi

They didn’t call this current crop the “golden generation” for nothing. From goalkeeper down to forward, Belgium boast some impressive talent in their squad, most of whom are still in the prime of their careers.

After a few disappointing seasons, first-choice keeper Thibaut Courtois has rediscovered his best form for Real Madrid this year.

He will have the benefit of playing behind some familiar faces in centre-backs Toby Alderweireld, Jan Vertonghen, Thomas Vermaelen, and Vincent Kompany. Manager Roberto Martinez has preferred to play with a back-three during his time in Belgium and will likely stick with that system.

Their midfield options aren’t as plentiful as they once were, although Axel Witsel and Youri Tielemans are two more than capable operators in the middle of the park.

And of course, there is Kevin De Bruyne. The Manchester City star remains one of the best playmakers in the world and can almost single-handedly orchestrate a team’s attack.

De Bruyne won’t be short of attacking options to pick out, either. Romelu Lukaku may have his fair share of critics, but he still gets goals. At 26 years of age, he is already the country’s all-time leading scorer with 52 international goals in just 84 caps.

Kevin De Bruyne is expected to step up his game for Belgium in the upcoming Euro 2020

Belgium’s Kevin De Bruyne in action against Scotland’s Kenny McLean at Hampden Park

Thorgan Hazard is having a fine debut season at Dortmund, while Dries Mertens, Divock Origi, and Michy Batshuayi are all useful options off the bench when in need of a goal.

Belgium have drawn a relatively easy group in the Euros as they will play Russia, Denmark, and Finland. They are massive 1.63 favourites to win the group and should have few problems doing so.

After that, much will depend on the draw. However, one could argue that except for reigning world champions France, the Euro 2020 odds should still have them favoured against any team they meet.

With Germany and Spain both in decline following their previous triumphs and England with some question marks at the back, there are few teams Belgians should be legitimately fearful of.

 

The Case Against Belgium

However, they could potentially be without one of their most important tools: Eden Hazard. The 29-year-old has had a disastrous season at Real Madrid this year, with injuries derailing his debut campaign.

He will miss the remainder of the season after he recently underwent surgery to repair his fractured ankle. That has put his availability for the Euros in serious doubt, although Martinez remains confident Hazard will return in time.

But even if Hazard does recover and make the squad, it would be a major surprise if he were to instantly rediscover his best form right away.

Belgium’s attack is still capable of producing several Euro 2020 highlights even in Hazard’s absence. However, they will lose that potential game-changing ability, something that is so crucial later in the tournament when Belgium will likely be facing the very best teams and the margins become much tighter.

Meanwhile, some critics will see their ageing defence as a potential weakness. The likes of Alderweireld, Vertongen, Vermaelen, and Kompany are all over 30. The latter two are no longer playing top-level club football, while the former two have not impressed with Spurs this season.

While the Belgian backline let in just three goals in qualifying, the level of opposition they faced was hardly formidable. They could very well get exposed if they come across a team that has the pace to get in behind that defence.

 

Verdict

SBOBET odds have Belgium priced at 6.00 to win the tournament, which is second only to England. However, there’s a legitimate argument that they are actually the best side in the Euros and are in fact undervalued by the odds. For that reason, they are certainly worth a bet.

But while much will be made about Hazard’s fitness and availability ahead of the tournament, the defence could end up making or breaking Belgium’s tournament. Their defensive solidity played a major part in their run to the semi-finals in the last World Cup, and it will once again be crucial in the Euros.

Alderweireld and Vertonghen have had disappointing campaigns thus far for Tottenham, though, and if they don’t turn back the clock in the Euros, they could be the ones that cost the golden generation their best shot at glory.

 

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SBOBET 13-Apr 2020 Monday 12:07 PM (116 days ago)            #14
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Euro 2020: Can the Germans Seek Glory Anew?

There’s still a considerable amount of uncertainty as we are counting down to the much-awaited Euro 2020 where around 16 teams lock horns for the coveted Henri Delaunay Cup.

Led by team manager Joachim Low, the Germans have impressed so far in the qualifying stages by sitting atop of Group C. Germany won seven of their eight games, gathering 30 points while conceding just seven, and that makes them huge favourites to win it all according to our Euro 2020 odds.

The Germans’ last major trophy was winning the FIFA World Cup six years ago. However, they failed to defend their title when they finished at the bottom of Group F in the qualifying rounds.

It has been a while since Germany won it all in the European showcase. The last time that they emerged victorious was back in 1996 where they were led by the likes of Andreas Moller, Matthias Sammer, and Jurgen Klinsmann.

With a stacked deck this time around, can the Germans finally win it all again? Today, let’s take an in-depth look at Germany’s roster.

 

Joachim Low’s imprint with the team

My fellow SBOBET writer pointed out that it is disrespectful to classify them as a dark horse, and I completely agree. But given their lofty standards to being one of the world’s upper echelon teams, getting back up and staying there should be their main focus.

The Germans have to make up for their performance last 2018 because for some reason, they played poorly in Russia. But it will be much easier said than done since they are drawn to be in the “Group of Death” along with the likes of Portugal and defending champions France.

Since their lacklustre performance in Russia, Joachim Low spoke about the need for the team to be more dynamic and to play faster which is why a sudden change in their playing philosophies has brought the Germans back to their feet.

They veered away from the old and usual 4-2-3-1 formation to a more mobile 3-4-3. At the same time, Low added some fresh new faces that are expected to take the mantle as the team’s leaders for the foreseeable future.

the world.

 

Fresh new faces getting the job done

Serge Gnabry leads the young Germans as they aim to lift the Euro 2020 trophy

Bayern’s Serge Gnabry controls the ball against Augsburg’s Tin Jedvaj during a Bundesliga match

Speaking of fresh new faces, they’ve added the likes Timo Werner and Serge Gnabry to spearhead their attack. The duo, along with veteran Marco Reus, has formed a strong attacking partnership that can produce some goals and Euro 2020 highlights. All in all, they’ve combined for 13 goals and three assists in the qualifying stages.

Supporting them are the likes of Julian Brandt, Lukas Klostermann, Joshua Kimmich, Leroy Sane, and Kai Havertz, who should add more playmaking and scoring to the team. Kimmich, in particular, is the player I’m looking out for since he has been doing so well for Bayern Munich at midfield in the Bundesliga, as he compiled two goals and four assists so far.

Along with their young turks, Joachim Low has some reliable veterans that should help them in their title push. Star goalkeeper Manuel Neuer and midfielder Toni Kroos are the only two players who started in their World Cup victory against Argentina in 2014 and they will provide invaluable experience to the squad.

the world.

 

Germany going all in

It’s no secret that the Germans are gunning for championship anew. But at the same time, they have done the necessary moves in securing their future by stockpiling some shiny new pieces.

From the first XI all the way to the third XI, Germany have the depth to go up against the world’s best teams especially since there looks to be no weaknesses in all positions by paper.

The team isn’t infallible though, especially since they had to deal with their share of injuries. First choice centre-back Niklas Sule is still recovering from a torn cruciate ligament injury like Leroy Sane and they have yet to show Low that they’re ready to go.

 

 

Die Mannschaft have 197 caps between them and an average age of just 26 years old. Although it won’t get any easier for them as they try to make a deep run, expect the Germans to go all in and it would be unwise to count them out in the tournament given their recent resurgence.

But first things first, the UEFA committee would need to deal with the coronavirus threat that has been considered as a pandemic already by the World Health Organization (WHO). I wouldn’t be surprised if Euro 2020 will be moved to a later date similar to the other major sporting events in the world.

 

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SBOBET 13-Apr 2020 Monday 12:09 PM (116 days ago)            #15
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Euro 2020: Cristiano Ronaldo – The Legend

No team in world football and no fan (who isn’t in denial) wouldn’t love to see Cristiano Ronaldo in their colours.

He’s played for the best teams in Europe for almost two decades and, at the grand old age of 35, there’s no sign of him slowing down. Fans of Manchester United, Real Madrid and now Juventus revere his genius and, with luck, we’ll all see him at Euro 2020.

Ronaldo is unarguably one of the best two players on the planet this century, alongside Barca’s Lionel Messi, and he’s a brand in himself. Who wouldn’t want a pair of CR7 undies?!

Before too long we’ll see him playing in Serie A once again, and we’ll be bang up to date with all the Euro 2020 news as it unfolds, here’s hoping we see Ronaldo and his team gracing the European stage.

 

Portugal’s Leader

Five years ago Ronaldo was named the best Portuguese player of all time by his nation’s Football Federation, having played 164 times and netting an astonishing 99 goals. After helping Portugal to the 2004 Euro Finals he became his nation’s captain in 2008 and has played in and scored in ten major tournaments. And by 2018 he became the highest European international goal scorer in history.

CR7 captained Portugal to its first major tournament triumph in the 2016 European Championships, though he was stretchered off during the final against France. He was named in the Team of the Tournament for the third time in his career and, in 2019, he captained Portugal to victory in the first ever Nations League.

The latest Euro 2020 betting odds here at SBOBET have Portugal at 17.00 as likely quarter-finalists. World Cup winners France will be the team to beat again but I wouldn’t rule out Ronaldo and co.

Euro 2020: Cristiano Ronalo has been with Portugal when they won Euro 2016 and Nations League

Cristiano Ronaldo in action during Juventus’ Champions League match against Lyon

Aside from that, reports today reveal the human side of a superhuman footballer, as Ronaldo plans to convert his hotels in Portugal to temporary hospitals to support the world’s battle against Coronavirus.

CR7 is a leader and a gentleman.

 

England’s Nemesis

Not everyone is a fan of Cristiano Ronaldo though. During his time in the Premier League he wasn’t everybody’s cup of tea. As Manchester United swept away all before them in the first decade of the Millennium, fans of opposing sides who bemoaned the impossibility of winning a penalty at Old Trafford, while expecting the Red Devils to be awarded a spot-kick when they needed one, often directed their ire at CR7.

The reality of course was that Ronaldo spent a lot of his time in his opponents’ penalty area and he was invariably too good for the hapless fullbacks tasked with marking and stopping him, by fair means or foul.

But those outside the Manchester United family blamed him anyway, for his part in the sending off of Wayne Rooney at the 2006 World Cup. In a game England were expected to win, his United club-mate kicked out at Ricardo Carvalho and, after leading the protests imploring the ref to send Rooney off, Ronaldo winked at his team-mates when the red card was brandished.

CR7’s breathtaking form in a dominant period for Manchester United helped his club win three consecutive league titles between 2007 and 2009, along with a Champions League.

When he left United for Real Madrid in a record £80m switch in the 2009 close season, Red Devils fans mourned his departure while the rest of the Premier League celebrated.

 

Record Breaker

As well as scoring more international goals than any other European player in history, Ronaldo has won five Ballons D’Or and four European Golden Shoes, both a record for a European player.

He was won an astonishing 29 trophies in his career so far, surely soon to become 30 and I expect he’ll finish his international career with 100 goals or more. He’s scored more goals in the Champions League than anyone in history, an incredible 128, and he has made over 1,000 professional appearances in his career scoring over 700 goals for club and country.

Manchester United would have him back in the blink of an eye and, with Juventus on track to win a record ninth Scudetto this year, there’s more to come from CR7.

 

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SBOBET 13-Apr 2020 Monday 12:11 PM (116 days ago)            #16
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Euro 2020: The Evolution of Kylian Mbappe

Without a doubt, one of the biggest stars set to feature in Euro 2020 was Kylian Mbappe. The Paris Saint-Germain forward is easily one of the best and most exciting players in the world at the moment.

Mbappe’s rise to the top has been nothing short of meteoric. Just five years ago, he was just a precocious 16-year-old prospect from Paris. But even then, the talent was there for all to see.

Nonetheless, it has been remarkable to see just how much Mbappe has grown as a player a short amount of time.

Allow SBOBET to take a look back at the staggering evolution of Mbappe, from a promising teenager into one of the brightest stars in the world.

 

The record-breaking phenom

Mbappe’s football career began in AS Bondy, a small club in his hometown of Paris, where he was coached by his father, Wilfried. But even as a young child, it was clear that he was special. He was advanced beyond his years, which was why he played with older age groups.

Mbappe and his undeniable talents eventually moved to Clairefontaine, France’s fabled youth development academy, which has produced numerous world-class players. There he garnered interest from some of the biggest clubs in the world.

But instead of jumping headlong into deep waters, Mbappe made (in hindsight) the wise decision of staying in France and joining the Monaco youth team.

It was a path the great Thierry Henry also took in his youth. And the comparisons with the Arsenal legend were inevitable as Mbappe proceeded to break Henry’s Monaco records.

On December 2, 2015, he made his debut for the first team at just 16 years and 347 days to top Henry’s record. It then took Mbappe a couple of months to break another of Henry’s record of being the club’s youngest-ever goalscorer at 17 years and 62 days.

That proved to be the only goal Mbappe would score in 14 appearances during his debut season in the French top flight. Not bad for a 17-year-old. However, it would hardly prepare anyone for what was to come next season.

 

The surprise package and Ligue 1 winner

PSG have dominated French football since QSI’s arrival at the club. With seemingly unlimited funds, they’d go on to win four league titles in a row from 2012-16. Mbappe’s Monaco were still competitive, finishing second in 2014 and third in both 2015 and 2016.

But in the 2016-17 season, it all came together for the side from the Principality. They had assembled a talented squad with just the right mix of youth (Mpabbe, Fabinho, Thomas Lemar, Benjamin Mendy, Bernardo Silva) and experience (Radamel Falco, Joao Moutinho, Kamil Glik).

By that point, Falcao had established himself as one of the premier marksmen in Europe. But even he alone couldn’t deliver the title to the Principality. Luckily, he didn’t have to do it on his own as an 18-year-old Kylian Mbappe broke out and scored 15 league goals in 29 appearances to help Monaco to an improbable championship.

Kylian Mbappe hopes to emulate his PSG form when he plays for France in Euro 2020

PSG star Kylian Mbappe is all smiles after scoring a goal against Bordeaux in France Ligue 1

His impact went beyond merely scoring goals, though. The threat of his uncanny speed on the wings and his overall versatility opened up so many things for that Monaco attack.

And as if winning the league over the PSG juggernaut wasn’t enough, Mbappe also made his mark in Europe. He scored six goals in Monaco’s improbable run to the semi-finals of the Champions League, two of which came in their memorable 6-6 quarter-final duel with Manchester City.

While he still looked all of 18 physically, Mbappe showcased the skill and maturity well beyond his years. His searing pace is the first thing that stands out, but the longer you watch him, the more you come to realise how advanced the rest of his game already was at such a young age. Even the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi didn’t look quite as polished at this early stage in their careers.

 

The World Cup champion and so much more

After that dream season, it was only a matter of time before Mbappe made the move to a top club, and he did just that in 2017 as he went to PSG. Despite the arrival of another superstar in Neymar, Mbappe made his mark right away.

However, there were much bigger things in store for Mbappe in the summer as he led France to World Cup glory in Russia. He scored four goals in the tournament, including the fourth and final goal in the final against Croatia as he became the second teenager after Pele to score in a World Cup final. At that point, he was well and truly a superstar.

But the scary part was that at just 19, he was far from the finished product. He still had much room for improvement in terms of his goalscoring, and improve he did.

The following season, he exploded for 39 goals in 43 games. And prior to the postponement of the European leagues, he had already topped 30 goals in 33 appearances in 2019-20.

Kylian Mbappe has come a long way in just five short years. From a 16-year-old with unlimited potential, he has tapped into that immense ability to win multiple Ligue 1 titles, the World Cup.

France are among the top contenders according to the Euro 2020 betting odds in large part due to him, and there’s no doubt he’d create a number of Euro 2020 highlights if the tournament does push through.

At just 21 years of age, Mbappe is far from done. There are still several more stages to his evolution as a football player — possibly one of the greatest of all-time, when it’s all said and done.

 

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SBOBET 13-Apr 2020 Monday 12:13 PM (116 days ago)            #17
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Euro 2020 is now Euro 2021!

We all saw it coming as football’s governing bodies, both international and domestic, wrestled with the impending fixture pile-up due to coronavirus disruption.

And yesterday UEFA announced that Euro 2020 is no more. The European Championships have been shelved until the summer of 2021, to give the European and domestic leagues the space to complete their seasons.

The big four leagues in Europe are multi-million and billion-pound enterprises, and the legal ramifications of failing to finish the season would be huge. Prize money and television revenues are the lifeblood of the big clubs, relegation from the top flight can be catastrophic and promotion can lift a team and its town or city to new heights.

So this decision, unfortunately, was a no-brainer, and we’ll just have to wait for the European showcase we so looked forward to. In a statement, UEFA said that it had agreed on a commitment to complete all domestic and European club competitions by the end of the current sporting season – with a target of 30th June.

Euro 2020 was due to kick-off on 12th June in Rome and the new dates have been set on June 11th to July 11th 2021, and a lot can change in 12 months. The latest Euro 2020 betting odds, prior to cancellation, pitched England as the tournament favourites, at odds of 5.00, but with France, Belgium and the Netherlands all close contenders we could see a change.

I expect France, in particular, to continue to strengthenwhile England head coach Gareth Southgate has spoken to the British press and indicated to Three Lions fans that they may have to wait a while to see their national team play again. The Nations League will be the next opportunity for us to see international football in Europe so check out the latest SBOBET odds. Les Blues are the early favourites at 5.00 with England at 6.50. And League A Group 2 looks like a belter. The Three Lions are at 2.10 to win the group, slightly behind the Red Devils at 2.00.

Hey; of course we’ll be back with the hottest and latest Euro 2021 news when it happens, but let’s get this year’s European and domestic seasons done.

 

Champions League and Europa League

The UEFA Champions League came to a halt at a fascinating moment, shortly after Atletico Madrid did a job on Liverpool, further improving Manchester City’s chances of lifting the trophy. The Sky Blues produced a stunning second-half fightback to take control of their tie away to Real Madrid, with Kevin De Bruyne converting a late penalty after Gabriel Jesus has equalised Isco’s 60th-minute strike.

Euro 2020 was postponed until 2021 due to the Coronavirus outbreak

Kevin De Bruyne in action for Manchester City against Real Madrid

 

Pep Guardiola’s side should see that tie through, while Barcelona represents the biggest threat to Manchester City’s Champions League aspirations. But the Blaugrana needs to see off Napoli after being held to a draw in their first leg at the San Paulo Stadium.

Manchester United are in great shape to make the last eight of the Europa League and are favourites to lift the trophy, with Premier League rivals Wolves and Inter Milan also highly fancied. The Red Devils hammered LASK 0-5, while Wolves drew 1-1 away to Olympiakos and Inter have a home tie with Getafe to play.

 

Bundesliga, La Liga, Premier League and Serie A

While FC Bayern seemed to be clicking through the gears at the top of the Bundesliga they still have work to do, four points ahead of Borussia Dortmund and with RB Leipzig and Borussia Monchengladbach still in the hunt.

Jurgen Klopp has steered Liverpool to the brink of the Premier League title and if they aren’t allowed to finish the job we’ll be able to hear their screams the length and breadth of Europe!

Meanwhile, in both Italy and Spain there will be a thrilling climax awaiting us when we get up and running again. Juventus and Lazio are battling it out at the top of Serie A, and Simone Inzaghi’s Lazio have a real chance of stopping I Bianconeri from winning a ninth successive Scudetto, just one point behind with 12 games to play.

And in Spain, Barcelona and Real Madrid will be itching to renew hostilities. Despite losing El Clasico on 1st March, the Blaugrana are in pole position, two points ahead of Los Blancos.

 

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SBOBET 13-Apr 2020 Monday 12:16 PM (116 days ago)            #18
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Euro 2020: Matchups to Look Out For Next Year!

As you all already know, the coronavirus pandemic has robbed us all of our football action since the Euro 2020 has been moved to 2021.

Euro 2020 was due to kick off on June 12 in Rome, Italy. Now, the dates have been moved to June 11 to July 11 of next calendar year.

With the European showpiece competition pushed for another year, expect these teams to do as much as they can to beef up.

My SBOBET colleague pointed out that prior to the postponement, England were the Euro 2020 odds favourites to win the whole thing at 5.00 in the 1×2 market, but a lot can happen in a year.

Portugal will look for a repeat while other teams such as France, Belgium, Germany, Netherlands, and Spain are gunning for the Henri Delaunay trophy as well.

While we’re waiting for our sporting events to resume, let’s take a super early look on some games to watch out for next year.

 

Spain vs Poland

Spain and Poland offer a mouthwatering matchup given their propensity to score.

With standouts like Oyarzabal, Fabian Ruiz, Isco, Lewandowski, Piatek, and Milik, the list goes on and on when we discuss about who can supply us with Euro 2020 highlights.

While this looks to be a win for Spain because of their very deep lineup, expect Poland to bring out all their guns as they have some interesting young pieces.

Krzysztof Piatek and Arkadiusz Milik are two dangerous players to look out for if you’re Spain’s manager as they can hit the woodwork and light you up.

Before transferring to Hertha BSC, Piatek emerged as AC Milan’s top striker while Milik led Napoli to a good run in the Serie A and in the Champions League.

Lewandowski, of course, is already a given so expect the Spaniards to key in on him too.

As for Spain, they need to figure out on who will be their goalkeeper moving forward since Kepa Arrizabalaga is not in good form. Meanwhile, David De Gea’s fitness might be a concern since he’s not getting any younger.

 

England vs Czech Republic

The Three Lions look to be the hot favourites to win the Euro 2020 championship, but can they live up to the promise and end their 54 years of hurt?

Their journey will start in Group D as they will face Croatia and Czech Republic in the draw.

Their match against Czech Republic offers an intriguing matchup especially since they faced each other already in the tournament’s group stages.

In their first match, England dominated Czech Republic with a 5-0 tally. However, the Czechs got their revenge by dealing the Three Lions their first loss of the competition.

England, like the other teams here, have a bevy of talent in their lineup. However, their fate lies on the hands of the likes of Harry Kane and Raheem Sterling.

The postponement of Euro 2020 is good news for Harry Kane

England captain Harry Kane could feature at Euro 2020, who is set to happen June and July 2021

Harry Kane is England’s top scorer but his fitness has always been a concern if you’re Gareth Southgate. The Tottenham striker has been dealing with a hamstring issue that’s bothered him for quite some time now.

On the other hand, Raheem Sterling’s form is also a concern for the Three Lions. The Manchester City forward has yet to net a goal for this calendar year.

Czech Republic have the pieces to hurt the Three Lions. They have Vladimir Darida and Patrik Schick who can create opportunities for their teammates. And with England’s goalkeeper yet to be figured out, this match might be closer than you think.

 

 

France vs Portugal

In what will be a rematch of the Euro 2016 finals, France and Portugal are set to clash in Group F aptly called as the Group of Death.

Cristiano Ronaldo, of course, is the main man for Portugal and he will lead the team for championship anew alongside the likes of Joao Felix, Bernardo Silva, and Bruno Fernandes.

Even with his advancing age, Ronaldo is as talismanic as ever given he continues to spoil us with noteworthy highlights every match.

While struggling playing for Atleti, Joao Felix is a young can’t-miss prospect capable of scoring goals too. Bernardo Silva and Bruno Fernandes offer quality and creativity down at the midfield.

Les Bleus are still in search of their first Euro title for over two decades. They last won it back in 1998 when Didier Deschamps led his nation to the promise land.

This time, Deschamps is their coach and he’ll have the task of guiding his club to one more title.

Kylian Mbappe is one of the best out there and he’s only 21 years old. Mbappe, alongside the likes of Antoine Griezmann, Paul Pogba, and Olivier Giroud form a super dangerous attacking partnership that will wreak havoc against their opponents.

Portugal got the best of them the last time they met and for sure we can expect a lot more fireworks in this highly-anticipated rematch.

 

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This message was edited by SBOBET on 13-Apr-2020 at 12:16 PM


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