Saturday , April 13 2024

The favorites and contenders for Euro 2024!

With the Euro 2024 in Germany on the horizon, the soccer world is about to witness some of Europe’s elite talents taking center stage. Bellingham, Ronaldo, Mbappe, Lewandowski, Musiala and more. Germany’s stadia and dedicated fanzines will be sure to bring a festive and carnival atmosphere to Germany. It could be like Oktoberfest plus soccer. The nation will get behind Julian Nagelsmann’s Germany team but will have to look out for other teams such as gunning for European soccer supremacy. The question remains who has the best chance of winning Euro 2024?

The reigning and defending champions

In case you forgot, Italy are the reigning European champions. Having triumphed at Wembley a few summers ago, Itlay has undergone somewhat of a transformation. Several key players have retired and their manager from their last success Roberto Mancini has left the role to pursue a new project overseas. But several excellent players remain such as Ciro Immobile, Stephan El Shaarawy, Marco Verratti, Federico Chiesa, Wilfried Gnonto and Gianluigi Donnarumma. If Italy can pull together and look past the disappointment of missing two World Cups in a row, they could be a team to fear.

The favorites with the viewers

So the other teams are Albania, Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, England, France, Germany, Hungary, Netherlands, Portugal, Romania, Scotland, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland and Turkey. Lest we forget, the playoff teams of which three will qualify for the tournament out of these countries Poland, Estonia, Wales, Finland, Israel,  Iceland, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ukraine, Georgia, Luxembourg, Greece and Kazakhstan. When the full complement of teams is complete via the playoff fixtures and rounds, what’s for sure is that the live coverage of Euro matches will be the hottest ticket of the sporting summer.

Amongst this impressive list, it’s fair to say that the favorites are France led by Kylian Mbappe, Antoine Griezmann, Olivier Giroud and Co. Already a championship team and so close to winning two World Cups, everyone in the world including their opponents know that France possess the quality and, more importantly, the mentality to go all the way in the tournament.

England with Jude Bellingham and Harry Kane leading the line will be another team to watch out for this summer. Forever falling short due to penalty shootouts, bad coaching decisions and other ills, Gareth Southgate’s men will be looking to change the narrative that has followed them since 1966. Other favorites to take the UEFA Euro 2024 crown according to most fans, sportsbooks and bookmakers include the hosts Germany, Spain and the ultra-talented Portugal.

With the likes of Joao Felix, Rafael Leao, Gonçalo Ramos and Renato Sanches coming off the bench, it’s fair to say that the Roberto Martinez-led Portugal has incredible firepower everywhere on the pitch. Can Ronaldo deliver another title while blending with the likes of Diogo Jota, Bernardo Silva, Bruno Fernandes and company? They have the talent, but can they get the best from their star players and keep the squad happy with sufficient rotation?

Underdogs with a fighting chance

Of course, the European Championships can always spring surprises. Think about Denmark and Greece stunning the entire world with their victories in 1994 and 2004 respectively. Would the Netherlands or Spain winning be a shock? Maybe not like Denmark or Greece but it would definitely go against the grain. Although both teams don’t have the quality of yesteryear, they could go on a magical run this summer and take the tournament by storm. For a true dark horse, look at Serbia. With the likes of Aleksandar Mitrović, Dušan Vlahović, Dušan Tadić and Sergej Milinković-Savić dominating soccer leagues around the world, they are a team that no one would like to face in the latter stages of the tournament.

About Arunava Chaudhuri

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