Content Editor at Free Super Tips, Alex was born in the shadow of Old Trafford and is an avid Man Utd fan. After graduating from university he combined his love of football, writing and betting to join FST and now closely follows goings-on in all of the top European leagues.
England team profile
Previous best: Semi-finals (1996)
England’s run to the semi-finals on home soil in Euro 1996 remains their best ever European Championship finish and this could be Gareth Southgate’s shot at redemption.
The England manager’s missed penalty in the semi-final against Germany sent the home nation crashing out at Wembley but now he’ll lead a young England team at what is very close to another home tournament for them.
All three group games will be played at Wembley and the only round that doesn’t have any matches in London is the quarter-finals.
Bright future for Southgate’s Lions
Few nations in world football boast the youthful exuberance and talent of England right now. The future certainly looks bright, but what about the present?
There is an embarrassment of riches in attack with Harry Kane, Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Jack Grealish, Raheem Sterling, Marcus Rashford, Phil Foden and Jadon Sancho battling for three positions in Southgate’s preferred 4-3-3 system, and the golden generation of full-backs is well documented, even after Trent Alexander-Arnold’s injury against Austria.
Further back there are some issues, though. Jordan Henderson and Harry Maguire are still in a race for fitness and that does leave England short of quality options in the centre of the park and at the back, with a three-man midfield of Henderson, Declan Rice and Mason Mount the ideal option.
Maguire will hope to partner the rejuvenated John Stones at the back, but the lack of quality depth in these positions perhaps explains Southgate’s shift to a four-man defence.
The abundance of talent at Southgate’s disposal could prove crucial in the latter stages of the tournament after such a hectic campaign for many of Europe’s top players. Whether England can make it to the latter stages is another question entirely, though.
England face dangerous road to the final
The Three Lions are priced up as second-favourites to win behind World Cup 2018 winners France, but the road to the final looks paved with danger.
Group D looks fairly straightforward. Czech Republic and Scotland are both a step down from England in terms of quality and Croatia are a shadow of the team that broke England hearts three years ago.
However, while England enjoyed a favourable run to the semi-finals in Russia, the route to the Euro 2020 Final isn’t quite so kind.
Should England win Group D they would face the runners-up of Group F in the last-16, also known as the Group of Death. The likely opponent would be one of Portugal, France or Germany, but a second-placed finish in Group D could set up a quarter-final clash with the winner of Group F.
There are no easy routes to for England and it’s debatable whether Gareth Southgate has the tactical knowledge to battle with the big boys.
Not to put a dampener on everybody’s spirits, but Euro 2020 could come a year or two too early for the Three Lions, although the possibility of playing all but one of their games at Wembley could be a key factor.
One to watch: Harry Kane
Golden Boot winner in Russia 2018, Harry Kane’s influence cannot be understated. He scored in every qualifying campaign and was overall top scorer in qualifying with 12 goals, but he’s added a new dimension to his game this season.
The wantaway Spurs striker had an incredible individual season despite Tottenham’s dismal campaign, topping both the goals and assists chart in the Premier League and having a hand 58 per cent of his club’s league goals.
His 14 assists illustrate how effective he has become dropping deep and releasing his teammates, a facet of his game that could cause huge problems for the opposition with the pace of Raheem Sterling, Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho available.
Rising star: Phil Foden
Phil Foden’s breakout season finally came for Manchester City and he did not disappoint, ending the campaign with nominations for both the PFA Player of the Season and the PFA Young Player of the Season.
It’s hardly surprising given how highly Pep Guardiola has talked of him since his arrival at the Etihad, but nobody quite expected him to be such a well-rounded player at the age of 21.
He has scored 16 and assists eight more at club level this term and has gone from a potential wildcard pick last summer to a must-start player for Gareth Southgate this year.
Did you know…
Only Turkey (24.58 years) have a younger average age than England’s (24.81 years) Euro 2020 squad.
England top team goalscorer – Harry Kane at 4/5
Captain and leading scorer in England’s current crop, Harry Kane is impossible to ignore in this market.
He may have taken a liking to dropping deep and playing provider this season but that didn’t dampen his goalscoring ambitions as he notched 28 for Spurs this season.
Kane scored in every Euro 2020 qualifier and ended the qualifying campaign with 12 goals, not to mention his Golden Boot-winning escapades in Russia three years ago.
Not only that, but he’s really the only one of England’s attackers that is a nailed on starter and he is a dab hand from penalties and free-kicks, too. The next highest scorer in the squad is the out-of-form Raheem Sterling and after that only Marcus Rashford has hit double figures for his country.
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