Roy Hodgson’s men became the first England team to win all of their European qualifiers. Does this mean they are nailed on to go far in France 2016? We look at the five other teams who have done this in the past and see how they performed during the finals.
Spain Euro 2012 – Winners
Spain are the only team in the history of the tournament to win the tournament after winning all qualification games. They won their group but could only manage a draw on their opening fixture of the group stages. They then went on to beat France 2-0 in the quarter finals, Portugal on Penalties before thumping Italy 4-0 in the final to lift the trophy.
Germany Euro 2012 – Semi Finals
Germany were also unbeaten heading into the Euro 2012 finals. They also managed to win all three group games against Portugal, Denmark and Holland. A convincing 4-2 victory over Greece in the quarter finals set up a semi final with Italy. However they lost the game 2-1 thanks to a Mario Balotelli brace.
France Euro 2004 – Quarter Finals
France won all eight qualifying games in 2004 and only conceded two goals. The defending champions were poor throughout the group stages winning just one game. However they stumbled through to a quarter final against Spain. It was no suprise that they lost the game 2-0 given their poor group stage form which was a massive disappointment when you have the likes of Zidane and Henry in your team.
Somewhat good news so for England fans as it looks like they’ve guaranteed a quarter final or semi final spot based on the above teams. However, two teams with 100% records actually went on to exit at the group stages of the finals!
Czech Republic Euro 2000 – Group Stage
Czech Republic were the only team to win all qualifying games but were drawn in a tough group with Holland and France. This ultimately led to them being knocked out at the group stages within two games. Their group consisted of some poor teams which should send warning signals out to England fans – Lithuania, Estonia, Bosnia, Faroe Islands and Scotland.
France Euro 1992 – Group Stage
After failing to qualify for the 1990 World Cup in Italy the French side were pleased to go unbeaten in qualifying for Euro 1992. However, Michel Platini’s men joined England in the finals and were knocked out in the group stages where Denmark and Sweden advanced.
How far do you think England will get in Euro 2016?
Don’t forget we’ll have free Euro 2016 tips for all playoff qualifiers and finals from France.
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